Amnesty International calls Hong Kong's new security law a "human rights emergency."
In June of last year, Beijing passed a comprehensive national security law that punishes subversion, secession, collusion with foreign forces, and terrorism with up to life in prison, putting the city on a more authoritarian path.
Authorities claim that the law will only affect a "extremely small fraction" of people and that it has brought calm to the country after months of frequently violent protests in 2019. Rights and freedoms in the former British colony are still safeguarded, they say, but they aren't absolute.
The majority of high-profile democratic leaders and activists have been arrested or are in self-exile as a result of the new law or for protest-related crimes.
"The National Security Law has put Hong Kong on a fast track to becoming a police state, creating a human rights emergency for the people who live there," said Yamini Mishra, Asia-Pacific Regional Director of Amnesty International.
Requests for reaction from the Hong Kong administration were not immediately returned.
According to authorities, all arrests were legal, and no one was above the law, regardless of their profession.
According to a tally by Reuters, more than 100 people were arrested and more than 60 were charged in the first year under the security law.