Tuesday, March 9, 2021
banner
Home /  World  /  China parliament eyes HK national security law after unrest

China parliament eyes HK national security law after unrest

AFP
Beijing
China’s parliament said on Thursday it will introduce a proposal for a national security law in Hong Kong at its annual session, in a move likely to stoke unrest in the financial hub.
Beijing has made clear it wants new security legislation passed after the semi-autonomous city was rocked by seven months of massive and sometimes violent pro-democracy protests last year.
The proposal will be introduced on Friday, the first day of the National People’s Congress, and would strengthen “enforcement mechanisms” in the financial hub, the parliament’s spokesman Zhang Yesui said.
China’s parliament considers it “necessary to improve and uphold the ‘One Country, Two Systems’ policy,” Zhang said, referring to the arrangement that has underpinned the city’s liberties and free market economy.
Article 23 of Hong Kong’s mini-constitution, the Basic Law, says the city must enact national security laws to prohibit “treason, secession, sedition (and) subversion” against the Chinese government.
But the clause has never been implemented due to deeply held public fears it would curtail Hong Kong’s widely cherished civil rights.
The city enjoys freedoms unseen on the Chinese mainland which are protected by an agreement made before former Britain handed the territory back to Beijing in 1997.

Pages