China allegedly passes national safety legislation for Hong Kong

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Hong Kong Police Guard of Honour increases a Chinese national flag and also a Hong Kong flag in a flag raising ceremony in the Golden Bauhinia Square on June 15, 2020 at Hong Kong, China.

Anthony Kwan | Getty Images

The top rated conclusion body in China’s parliament has allegedly  handed the controversial national safety legislation for Hong Kong, in accordance with local media.

The legislation was allegedly passed by the Standing Committee of China’s National People’s Congress on Tuesday, Reuters said, citing Cable TV.

It comes before tomorrow’s anniversary marking Hong Kong’s handover in the U.K. to mainland China on July 1, 1997.  Hong Kong — a former British colony dominated under the”one country, two systems” framework — appreciates a few freedoms which other Chinese cities don’t have. They include restricted election rights along with a mostly separate legal and financial system. 

But critics say the new law will undermine the freedom promised into the specific administrative region as it had been passed over to China 23 years back.

Beijing claims the law is directed at forbidding secession, subversion of state authority, terrorism actions and international interference.  It was suggested through China’s annual parliamentary assembly in late May and also reignited protests in Hong Kong over anxieties that freedoms in town will be eroded.

Before this week, Eurasia Group stated that passing the legislation prior to the anniversary of the handover might be a sign that Beijing would like to”clamp down on protests far forward” of Hong Kong’s legislative council elections in September.

The South China Morning Post noted that Hong Kong delegates to China’s top advisory body have been requested to attend a meeting at 3 pm on Tuesday. Additionally, it cited sources that said state news agency Xinhua would print particulars of their laws in the day. A complete draft of this law hasn’t been publicly shown thus far.

Controversy within the legislation

Many were worried about Beijing encroaching on Hong Kong’s rights and rights when this law has been suggested, in part since the movement would skip the town’s own lawmakers.

Hong Kong was guaranteed a high degree of independence for 50 years following the handover — or till 2047. There’s not any clarity on what’s going to occur when the coverage ceases.

It’s also regarded as a means for China to obtain more control following Hong Kong watched prolonged — and occasionally violent –protests within a now-withdrawn extradition bill.

Meanwhile, companies see the need for a safety law, but wish to learn what it involves and how it’ll be executed, David Dodwell, executive manager of the Hong Kong-APEC Trade Policy Group, told CNBC in early June.

Reuters reported that a federal safety office could be put up in Hong Kong to gather intelligence and manage related offenses, which the town’s chief, Carrie Lam, could be permitted to appoint certain judges to listen to national security cases. 

Lam stated she wouldn’t do this, but might pick a board of judges which the judiciary could choose from, according to Reuters. 

She’s also explained the new law wouldn’t infringe on Hong Kong’s way of life, but might aim a”small minority of both criminal and illegal acts.”

Global backlash

Countries such as the U.K. have criticized Beijing within the legislation that they state will infringe the rights of Hong Kong taxpayers. The European Parliament this month voted to the EU to accept China into the International Court of Justice when the federal security law is enforced on Hong Kong, Reuters reported.

The U.S. Senate last week passed legislation which could impose mandatory sanctions on companies or people that back attempts by China to restrict Hong Kong’s independence.  However, for the Hong Kong Autonomy Act to become law, it must be passed by the House of Representatives and signed by U.S. President Donald Trump.

It arrived after Secretary of State Mike Pompeo informed Congress in late May that the town was no more highly separate from China.

China has struck back and urged that the U.S. to not intervene in its domestic affairs.

“Regardless of how vociferous the separatist forces in Hong Kong and the way driven by outside anti-China forcesthey can not stop China’s conclusion and activities to promote Hong Kong’s federal security laws,” said Zhao Lijian, deputy manager of the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs Information Department. “Their storyline will fail, and also the appropriate bill can also be a part of waste paper”

— CNBC’s Huileng Tan, Yen Nee Lee, Tucker Higgins contributed to this report.

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