The so-called "Hong Kong Autonomy Act" by the U.S. in response to the newly enacted Law of the People's Republic of China on Safeguarding. National Security in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (SAR) is illegal and amounts to gross interference in China's internal affairs.
The Chinese law aims to protect Hong Kong. Since Hong Kong is part of China, it is a legitimate right of the country to promulgate a national security law. On the other hand, the U.S. move aims to restrict China, which is a sovereign nation over which the U.S. has no jurisdiction.
The Trump administration has also announced sanctions against Chinese officials and companies, which is a violation of international law and principles of international relations.
Since Hong Kong's return to China on July 1, 1997, anti-China forces in the U.S. and U.K. have never stopped trying to use the SAR as a pawn to contain China. Hong Kong's eminence as an international free trade hub makes it a prominent target since any turbulence in Hong Kong will impact the overall Chinese economy.
There have been attempts to destabilize Hong Kong and the riots in 2019, financed by U.S. and British anti-China forces abetting pro-independence groups, took a toll on national security.
The vast majority of Hong Kong residents are opposed to the chaos, which affected their daily life and work as well as Hong Kong's economic development. The sharp contraction in Hong Kong's economic growth in 2019 shows that without stability, Hong Kong will regress.
Comments by Chinese netizens on the Internet show that they urged the Central Government to take action to stabilize Hong Kong. So the national security law was also implemented in answer to the public demand for stability and security in Hong Kong.
In addition, it is a means to uphold the "one country, two systems" principle in Hong Kong, and not undermine it, as claimed by the anti-China forces. It is designed to protect Hong Kong people's rights to democracy and security from rioters, helping to restore order.
The national security law has made up for the inability of the Basic Law of Hong Kong to promulgate necessary laws to safeguard national sovereignty, security and development. Article 23 of the Basic Law states that Hong Kong SAR "shall enact laws on its own to prohibit any act of treason, secession, sedition, subversion against the Central People's Government, or theft of state secrets, to prohibit foreign political organizations or bodies from conducting political activities in the Region, and to prohibit political organizations or bodies of the Region from establishing ties with foreign political organizations or bodies."
However, external forces abetted and strengthened the opposition's obstruction of the implementation of this article. One reason for their action is that if chaos prevails in Hong Kong, it suits their interests. The "Hong Kong Autonomy Act" will offer them excuses to impose sanctions on China and embolden pro-independence forces to try turn Hong Kong upside down once again.
Since the anti-China forces have been manipulating obstruction to Article 23, they will no doubt try everything possible to do the same to the national security law. If unchecked, this will trigger new frictions between China and interfering foreign forces.
However, they should realize that tough sanctions might cast a shadow on Hong Kong in the short term, but in the long run, the fate of the SAR is in the hands of its people. Since its return to China, Hong Kong has expanded its role as a global financial center and free trade port. Its stability and prosperity is no largesse from any foreign government but was consolidated with the labor of its own people, the Central Government's strong support, and the booming Chinese economy.
The national security law is designed to punish four criminal offenses endangering national security. They target a very small number of perpetrators and protect the vast majority of law-abiding residents. Its implementation will complement Hong Kong's judicial system, stabilize social order and improve the local business environment, benefiting locals as well as international investors.
The Chinese reaction to the "Hong Kong Autonomy Act" has been uniform. A spokesperson of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said the Chinese Government and Chinese people's determination and will to safeguard national sovereign security and maintain stability and prosperity in Hong Kong will not be shaken by any forces in any condition. Any attempt to undermine China's sovereignty, security and development interests by taking advantage of Hong Kong is doomed to fail.
The comments on the Internet by the ordinary Chinese echo the same sentiment. The national security law is actually the Chinese people's will.
(Printed Edition Title: People's Will Vs. Illegal Bill)
Copyedited by Sudeshna Sarkar
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