Details of China's national security law for Hong Kong unveiled

  • Details of China's national security law for Hong Kong unveiled

Details of China's national security law for Hong Kong unveiled

Under the new law, Beijing will set up a national security office in Hong Kong to collect and analyze intelligence and deal with criminal cases related to national security.

While most cases will be heard in Hong Kong courts, suspects can be extradited to mainland China for trial under situations that are out of the Hong Kong government's control.

Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam had declined to confirm passage of the law earlier Tuesday while the Standing Committee was still meeting.

Local media reports have suggested that the Chinese government is looking to finalize and implement the security law before July 1, which many suspect could allow Beijing to interfere with Hong Kong's upcoming legislative council election in September.

The latest development could become a setback for thawing ties between Japan and China despite their differences over perception of wartime history and territory.

Dozens of supporters of Beijing popped champagne corks and waved Chinese flags in celebration in front of government headquarters.

"When you intend to pass laws that seriously affect the lives of seven million people, you make sure you have open consultation".

Japanese Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga attends a press conference in Tokyo on June 30, 2020.

Wong has said he will be a "prime target" of Beijing's national security law, which critics fear will crush freedoms in the former British colony.

Lam said Hong Kong had been "traumatised by escalating violence fanned by external forces" and added: "No central government could turn a blind eye to such threats to sovereignty and national security".

But political scientists disagree. They say using a draconian law to coerce superficial stability would only fuel resentment among citizens and is not a long-term solution.

For about a year, demonstrations have taken place in Hong Kong over recent moves that those in the territory say are steps to ending China's longstanding "one country, two systems" arrangement with Hong Kong.

Zhu warned the DPP authority against interfering in Hong Kong affairs, saying that the law will help thwart its attempts to collude with those who want to sow chaos in Hong Kong.

The EU is now "carefully assessing" the next steps, she said.

Only a handful of Hong Kong delegates to the national legislature saw a draft of the law before its passage, a major point of contention, with many in the city decrying the lack of transparency given the legislation's far-reaching consequences.

The US, already in dispute with China over trade, the South China Sea and the novel coronavirus, began eliminating Hong Kong's special status under US law on Monday, halting defence exports and restricting technology access.

Beijing and Hong Kong's government reject those allegations.

Rights groups, many western governments and the Unitied Nations' rights body have expressed alarm over the law.

The new law expected to come into effect on Wednesday, the 23rd anniversary of the city's handover to China from British rule.

The law, formulated based on an NPC decision on establishing and improving the legal system and enforcement mechanisms for the HKSAR to safeguard national security, has 66 articles in six chapters, and is a comprehensive law with substantive law, procedural law and organic law contents.

It comes into force as soon as it is gazetted in Hong Kong, which is seen as imminent.

And mere hours after the national security bill was approved, at least two opposition political parties announced they had effectively dissolved themselves. It follows months of anti-government protests in Hong Kong past year that at times descended into violence.

Sales of VPN software, used to circumvent China's Internet censors and evade some measures of digital surveillance, have skyrocketed.

However, the answer requires "strong coordination with all member states", Charles Michel, president of the European Council added.