Views on Article 23 mostly positive

February 29, 2024

The Government announced today that it received a total of 13,147 submissions during the public consultation period on Basic Law Article 23 legislation and based on the initial figures, 98.64% of the participants showed their support for the legislation and made positive comments.


The public consultation concluded yesterday.


According to the preliminary figures as at 11.59pm yesterday, the Government received, mainly by email, post or fax, a total of 13,147 submissions during the consultation period.


Among them, 12,969 expressed their support and made positive comments, while 85 purely contain questions or opinions therein that cannot reflect the authors' stance.


There are 93 submissions, representing 0.71% of the total, which oppose the legislative proposals, and amongst them, over 10 are overseas anti-China organisations or abscondees.


The Security Bureau noted that the result has indicated that the legislative proposals have gained majority support from the public.


Views received cover different aspects of the legislative proposals while some offered views on safeguarding national security beyond what is covered in the proposals of the consultation document, serving as valuable reference in the process of drafting the bill, the bureau added.


Since the commencement of the public consultation, the Government had held nearly 30 consultation sessions to meet with representatives from various sectors to give them detailed briefings on the proposals in the consultation document.


About 3,000 people participated in the consultation sessions and a majority of the participants indicated their support for the legislation.


Apart from thanking citizen for their active participation in the public consultation, the Government emphasised that it is pleased that society has reached consensus to complete the legislation as early as possible.


It also said that it is encouraged by the proactive expression of support for the legislation work by various sectors, which demonstrates a strong ambience to support the Basic Law Article 23 legislation in the society.


The Government made it clear that it will work in full steam to consolidate the results of the public consultation and report to the joint meeting of the Legislative Council’s (LegCo) Panel on Security and the Panel on Administration of Justice & Legal Services.


By making reference to the views received, it will also strive to finalise the Safeguarding National Security Bill as soon as possible so that it can be introduced to LegCo.


The Government added that during the legislative process, it will continue to brief various sectors proactively, take the initiative to disseminate further information in relation to the legislation through different channels, and refute groundless attacks and smears on the Basic Law Article 23 legislation to set the record straight and protect the public from being misled.

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