China's Ambassador Says Hong Kong's Security Law to Make Social System Stable, Governance Effective
10:28 GMT 09.06.2020
MOSCOW (Sputnik) - The central authorities' national security legislation will only strengthen Hong Kong's legal system, while people's freedoms and interests of investors will remain unaffected, Chinese Ambassador to Russia Zhang Hanhui said in an interview.
According to the diplomat, the draft legislation would target an "extremely small range of activities," namely those that endanger national security.
"[The planned legislation] does not affect the autonomy of Hong Kong, nor the rights and freedom of citizens of Hong Kong, nor legal rights and interests of foreign investors in Hong Kong. On the contrary, thanks to this decision by the National People's Congress of China, the legal system of Hong Kong will become better, the social system more stable, law-based governance more effective, and the business environment more favourable," Zhang said.
The ambassador said that the rise in violence from radical separatist forces and foreign interference against the backdrop of 2019 protests in Hong Kong "has caused grave harm to China's national security and created a huge threat to the stability and prosperity of Hong Kong and the implementation of the 'one country, two systems' policy."
"The Central government of China is adamant and resolute in protecting state sovereignty, security, and development interests, and decisively and adamantly oppose any foreign forces interfering in the affairs of Hong Kong. On such an important and fundamental issue, it is impossible to continue to back down and make concessions," Zhang stated.
In May, the Chinese parliament passed a resolution to develop the national security law that bans secessionist and subversive activity in Hong Kong.
Supported by the Hong Kong leadership, the move has triggered a backlash from the local opposition and Western countries that express concerns about a possible infringement on civil rights. Washington, in particular, has threatened to revoke the city's favoured trade status with the US.
China and Russia will build on their cooperation in the fight against the coronavirus, emerging as stronger partners after the pandemic, Chinese Ambassador in Moscow Zhang Hanhui told Sputnik in an interview.
The two countries supported each other in overcoming the peaks of the epidemic, sending humanitarian aid when it was needed most. Since China was the first to confront and counter coronavirus, it also sent a team of 10 medical experts to Russia in April to exchange experience.
"The experience of China and Russia in the fight against the pandemic will be transformed into impetus to accelerate the development of Chinese-Russian relations after the epidemic," Zhang said.
The ambassador recalled that, despite the pandemic, bilateral trade increased by 3.4 percent to $25.4 billion in the first quarter of 2020 year-on-year. China's imports from Russia grew by 17.3 percent to $16.2 billion, with Russia ranking first among the country's main trading partners in terms of imports growth.
As the two economies recover from the coronavirus crisis, the ambassador expressed hope that China and Russia "will continue to closely cooperate while jointly responding to the challenges of the pandemic" to further strengthen relations and implement their goal to boost bilateral trade to $200 billion by 2024.
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