Simon Cheng Man-Kit who is employed by the British Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO) working with the British consulate in Hong Kong has been detained by the Chinese authorities.
He was detained in Shenzen for allegedly violating Chinese law and has been given 15 days of “administration detention,” according to the nation’s foreign ministry.
Spokesman Geng Shuang confirmed on Wednesday during a news briefing that Cheng violated public security and management regulations in neighbouring mainland city of Shenzhen.
Geng hit out at the UK for commenting over the detention, he said, “As for Britain’s comments, we’ve made stern representations to Britain for the series of comments and actions they’ve made on Hong Kong.
“We request they stop making these irresponsible statements, stop meddling in Hong Kong’s affairs and stop interfering in China’s internal affairs.”
An FCO spokesman said, “We are concerned by reports that a member of our team has been detained while returning to Hong Kong from Shenzhen.
“We are providing support to their family and seeking further information from authorities in Guangdong province and Hong Kong.”
Cheng works for the Scottish development international, a spokesman added, “We are aware of this incident and we are concerned for Mr Cheng’s welfare.
“We are liaising with the FCO, who are in contact with Mr Cheng’s family, the authorities in Guangzhou and Hong Kong, and are seeking further information.”
It is unclear as to whether Cheng had a diplomatic passport with him at the time of his detention.
His family said previously on Facebook, “He travelled back to Hong Kong by high-speed rail on the evening of the same day, and sent messages to his girlfriend via WhatsApp and Wechat while he was about to pass customs at about 10 pm. We lost contact with him since then.”
Hong Kong has been embroiled in political pro-democracy protests the last three month and tensions remain high.