Chinese Ambassador to India H.E. Sun Weidong Publishes Article "Towards national security and peace in Hong Kong" in The Hindu

On July 24th, 2020, Chinese Ambassador to India H. E. Sun Weidong published an article entitled "Towards national security and peace in Hong Kong" in The Hindu. The full text is as follows:

Towards national security and peace in Hong Kong

The promulgation and implementation of the Law of the People's Republic of China on Safeguarding National Security in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) marks a major turning point from unrest to peace and order, and a farewell to the history of "unguarded" national security in Hong Kong.

The Law is enacted for the purpose of ensuring the resolute, full and faithful implementation of the policy of One Country, Two Systems under which the people of Hong Kong administer Hong Kong with a high degree of autonomy; safeguarding national security; preventing, suppressing and imposing punishment for the offences of secession, subversion, organisation and perpetration of terrorist activities, and collusion with a foreign country or with external elements to endanger national security in relation to Hong Kong; maintaining prosperity and stability of Hong Kong; and protecting the lawful rights and interests of the residents of Hong Kong.

Since the turbulence over the amendment bill last year, with support from foreign and external forces, the anti-China forces have openly instigated "Hong Kong independence" separatist acts and serious violent incidents, which highlighted big national security loopholes in the city. Hong Kong has been plunged into the gravest situation since their return. The city has lost the title of the world's freest economy it had held for 25 years. Its GDP registered negative growth for the first time in a decade, and the unemployment rate hit a record high in nearly 10 years.

Significant effect of the law

The national security legislation for HKSAR was enacted by the Standing Committee of China's National People's Congress in accordance with the Chinese Constitution and the Basic Law of the HKSAR. The legislation plugs the legal loopholes and provides strong institutional and legal safeguards for national security in Hong Kong, which has significant effect on the long-term development of the city.

First, the legislation will guarantee the sustained implementation of One Country, Two Systems. One Country is the precondition and basis for Two Systems. Only when One Country is safe and secure can Two Systems be safeguarded. The legislation will neither change the principle of One Country, Two Systems, the capitalist system or the high degree of autonomy practiced in Hong Kong, nor the legal system in Hong Kong or Hong Kong's independent judicial power, including that of final adjudication.

Second, the legislation will protect the lawful rights and freedoms of Hong Kong residents. The legislation clearly stipulates four types of criminal offences and principles of the rule of law such as respecting and protecting human rights. The legislation will not lead to generalised understanding or unlimited expansion of "national security". It will not affect but better protect the lawful rights and freedoms of Hong Kong residents. For a handful of people endangering national security, the law is a sword hanging above. Yet for the vast majority of Hong Kong residents, including foreigners in Hong Kong, the law is a guardian for their rights, freedoms and peaceful life.

Third, the legislation will safeguard long-term prosperity and stability of Hong Kong. Without national security, there will be neither lasting peace and stability for China nor long-term prosperity and stability for Hong Kong. The legislation will help to restore the order and maintain the stability in Hong Kong, consolidate and enhance Hong Kong's international financial, trade and shipping center status, further strengthen the confidence of foreign investors, and create a better living and business environment for foreign nationals and enterprises in Hong Kong. International credit rating agency S&P has affirmed its AA+ issuer credit ratings on Hong Kong and maintained the outlook as stable, which shows international investors' confidence in Hong Kong's future.

The legislation is firmly supported by the mainstream public opinion in Hong Kong and the forces of justice in the international community. Nearly three million people in Hong Kong have signed a petition in support of the enactment of the Law, and more than 1.28 million have signed an online petition opposing the interference by the U.S. and other external forces. More than 70 countries voiced their support for the legislation at the 44th session of the United Nations Human Rights Council.

An internal affair

National security legislation belongs to the sovereignty of a country and the authority of the Central government. It is justified that China governs the country and Hong Kong in accordance with the law. It is spelt out in the constitutions of over 100 countries that the exercise of basic rights and freedoms shall not endanger national security. It's common practice in the world to safeguard the national security through legislation. Hong Kong is China's Hong Kong. Hong Kong affairs are China's internal affairs that allow no foreign interference. Some western politicians use the national security legislation as an excuse to interfere in China's internal affairs. What they care about is not the freedoms of Hong Kong people, but the "freedoms" of trampling on China's national security. The Chinese government is firmly committed to safeguarding national sovereignty, security and development interests, firmly committed to implementing One Country, Two Systems, and firmly committed to opposing interference in Hong Kong affairs by external forces.

India and Hong Kong have close economic and trade relations. It serves India's interest to maintain the prosperity and stability in Hong Kong. The national security legislation will better protect the safety of foreign investment and legitimate rights and interests of foreign nationals in Hong Kong, including that of India. We hope Indian friends can uphold fairness and justice, respect and support China's efforts to safeguard national security in Hong Kong in accordance with law.

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