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People's Daily Online

Commissioner's office of Chinese foreign ministry in HKSAR says national security legislation helps ensure greater success of "one country, two systems"

People's Daily Online

(Xinhua) 10:11, May 23, 2020

HONG KONG, May 22 (Xinhua) -- The Office of the Commissioner of the Chinese Foreign Ministry in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) said Friday that the national security legislation for the HKSAR is not only necessary for plugging loopholes in Hong Kong's national security legal system and upholding national sovereignty and security, but also conducive to ensuring long-term prosperity and stability of Hong Kong and greater success of "one country, two systems."

A draft decision on establishing and improving the legal system and enforcement mechanisms for the HKSAR to safeguard national security was submitted to the third session of the 13th National People's Congress (NPC) for deliberation Friday.

The spokesperson of the commissioner's office said that national security is the prerequisite for a nation's very survival and development and should be a top priority. A country is simply exercising and upholding its sovereignty by enacting national security laws, which is perfectly consistent with international law and common practice.

In countries of both unitary and federal systems, enacting national security laws falls within the state's legislative power; and countries of both common and Continental law systems have national security laws or specific provisions to prohibit and punish acts that may undermine national sovereignty, territorial integrity and security, said the spokesperson.

The spokesperson pointed out that 30 years after the promulgation of the Basic Law of the HKSAR and nearly 23 years after Hong Kong's return to the motherland, forces trying to sow trouble in Hong Kong and China at large still refuse to accept the fact of Hong Kong's return, and keep bent on turning Hong Kong into an independent or semi-independent political entity and a frontier for session, subversion, infiltration and sabotage activities against the mainland. They have deliberately distorted "one country, two systems" and the principles and contents of the Basic Law, and tried every means to obstruct the enactment of the legislation required by Article 23 of the Basic Law.

The spokesperson pointed out that since the illegal "Occupy Central" and the unrest following the proposed amendment bill, the separatists and radicals in Hong Kong have become more rampant, openly advocating "Hong Kong independence" and "liberating Hong Kong," and even calling for "gaining independence through armed revolution" and "setting up an interim government" under the so-called "public square constitution". They have begged for foreign interference into and sanctions upon Hong Kong, applied the "burn with us" tactic in society, politics and economy, and ramped up violent terrorist acts. External forces have blatantly meddled with Hong Kong affairs, and colluded with and supported the opposition and violent extremists in inciting chaos in Hong Kong and China at large.

The spokesperson pointed out that such acts have severely threatened China's national sovereignty, unity and territorial integrity, and the political and public security in the HKSAR. They have posed a grave challenge to the red line of the "one country, two systems" principle, and a real and major danger to China's national security. Therefore, Hong Kong has become a prominent risk for China's national security.

The spokesperson emphasized that no single country would ever turn a blind eye to actions severely undermining its national security, allow any of its cities to remain "defenseless", or tolerate arbitrary interference by hostile foreign forces into its domestic affairs.

Hong Kong is an inalienable part of China's territory and a local administrative region directly under the Central People's Government. The central government has both the right and the obligation to safeguard national security in Hong Kong, said the spokesperson.

As national security is at peril in Hong Kong and it is difficult for the HKSAR government to enact national security laws on its own, it is both imperative and urgent for the central government to act decisively, and establish and improve at the state level a legal system and enforcement mechanism for the HKSAR to safeguard national security, which is also fundamental to further success of "one country, two systems," stressed the spokesperson.

The spokesperson said that the national security legislation for Hong Kong is targeted at secession, subversion, terrorism, external interference and other acts undermining national security. It only targets at the small minority committing crimes to damage national security, and will in no way impact the daily lives of the majority of the citizens. The duty to safeguard national security will be performed strictly in line with legal provisions, mandates and procedures, and will not prejudice any legitimate rights or interests.

The central government is firmly committed to fully and faithfully implementing the principles of "one country, two systems," "Hong Kong people governing Hong Kong" and a high degree of autonomy. It will continue to uphold law-based governance of Hong Kong, protect legitimate interests of foreign countries and investors in accordance with the law, support countries in maintaining and developing relations with Hong Kong in areas like economy, trade, culture and tourism, and support Hong Kong in its external exchanges and cooperation so as to reinforce its status as the international financial, trading and shipping center, said the spokesperson.

The spokesperson reiterated that the central government of China is rock-firm in safeguarding national sovereignty, security and development interests, in implementing the "one country, two systems" principle, and in opposing any external interference in Hong Kong affairs. A prosperous and stable Hong Kong and greater success of "one country, two systems" serve the common interests of all sides, including the international community.

"We hope the international community will abide by international law principles and norms governing international relations such as non-interference and mutual respect for sovereignty and territorial integrity, fully and accurately understand and support with concrete actions 'one country, two systems,' view the NPC's decision in an objective and impartial manner, respect and support China's efforts to safeguard national security in Hong Kong in accordance with the law, and avoid meddling with Hong Kong affairs and China's internal affairs at large in any possible way," said the spokesperson.

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