This should not ease the tensions between China and Hong Kong. According to statements by a senior official in the former British colony on Wednesday, Hong Kong suspects may well be extradited to mainland China under the security law that Beijing intends to impose on the city-state. New statements which are not without importance since, last year, it was a project of authorization of the extraditions towards China which started a wave of demonstrations in Hongkong which lasted long months. The analysis is made by Tam Yiu-chung, the only Hong Kong representative on the Standing Committee of the National People’s Assembly (ANP, Chinese Parliament).
Read also “The future of Hong Kong seems very bleak to me”
The project was later abandoned, but in response to last year’s political crisis, the worst since the handover in 1997, Beijing decided to push through by imposing controversial legislation on its semi-autonomous region. security that prodocrats see as the most serious breach of the principle “One country, two systems”. Beijing says that this text, not yet finalized, is necessary to end this crisis and restore the stability of Hong Kong.
Foreign interference and national security
In an interview with the Hong Kong TV channel RTHK on Wednesday, Tam Yiu-chung explains that certain prosecutions relating to foreign interference, or certain files involving diplomatic questions, could be transferred by the Hong Kong justice to the justice of mainland China. Asked if it could involve the extradition of Hong Kong people to be tried in mainland China, he replied, “If the central government deems it necessary, it should not be run by the Hong Kong courts, then, it will be an option. “
Read also China forces Zoom to banish a leader of Tiananmen in exile
Deng Zhonghua, deputy head of the Chinese Bureau for Hong Kong and Macao Affairs, said on Monday that Beijing would be competent to deal with “extremely rare” national security matters once the law is passed. In accordance with the principle “One country, two systems” which had presided over the handover, China had accepted that Hong Kong should retain freedoms unknown in the rest of the country, and in particular independent legislative and judicial powers.
Over 80 NGOs have stepped up to the plate
Beijing denies seeking to cut Hong Kong liberties. On Wednesday, a group of 86 NGOs and human rights associations, including Amnesty International or Human Rights Watch, published an open letter asking the ANP Standing Committee to abandon the security bill. The ANP gave a mandate at the end of May to its Standing Committee to draft the text to be incorporated into the Basic Law, the mini-Constitution of Hong Kong, thereby bypassing the Legislative Council (LegCo, the Hong Kong Parliament).
“All that is known at this stage suggests that it will threaten the fundamental rights and freedoms of the Hong Kong people,” the letter said. “It amounts to criminalizing vague attacks that include all criticism of the government and can be used against those who exercise and defend human rights peacefully. “