Hong Kong’s Catholic bishop to visit Beijing in first trip in decades

Hong Kong’s top Catholic cleric, Bishop Stephen Chow, will visit Beijing in April, the first such visit in nearly 30 years.

Chow’s five-day trip, to start on April 17, follows an invitation last year by the Bishop of Beijing, Joseph Li Shan, the Hong Kong Catholic Diocese said in a statement on Thursday.

It cited Chow saying the visit “underscores the mission of the Diocese of Hong Kong to be a bridge….and promote exchanges and interactions between the two sides”.

A Diocese spokesperson on Friday confirmed to Reuters that it will be the first time since 1994 – when Hong Kong was still a British colony – that a Hong Kong bishop has officially visited Beijing.

Chinese foreign ministry spokeswoman Mao Ning said that China was not aware of Chow’s upcoming visit.

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