False remarks strongly condemned

March 20, 2024

The Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Government today firmly opposed and strongly condemned the slanders and smears as well as grossly misleading and false remarks made continuously by the US and some Western countries, anti-China organisations, anti-China politicians, foreign media and wanted people absconded overseas, after the unanimous passage of the Safeguarding National Security Ordinance by the Legislative Council on March 19.


The Hong Kong SAR Government said not only are those remarks totally unfounded and fact-twisting, but also entirely disregard the constitutional duty and practical needs of the Hong Kong SAR to legislate, and the positive effects brought by the enactment of the legislation on economic development and protection of human rights.


“It is the constitutional duty of the Hong Kong SAR to safeguard national security. In accordance with international law and international practice based on the Charter of the United Nations, safeguarding national security is an inherent right of all sovereign states. Many common law jurisdictions, including such Western countries as the US, the UK, Canada, Australia and New Zealand, as well as Singapore, have enacted multiple pieces of legislation to safeguard national security.


“Turning a blind eye to the fact and making exaggerated remarks, the anti-China forces maliciously smeared the Safeguarding National Security Ordinance, demonstrating typical political hegemony and hypocrisy with double standards.”


The Hong Kong SAR Government emphasised that this legislation is indeed the aspiration of the people.


After the unanimous passage of the Safeguarding National Security Ordinance by LegCo, members of the public and various sectors of the community including the commercial sector and major chambers of commerce, the legal sector, real estate association, the youth sector, other professional sectors and political parties, voiced support for the Hong Kong SAR Government’s legislative work through different channels such as issuing public statements.


All those raising opposing comments were external forces, as the legislation will increase their cost of and difficulty in endangering our national security.


During the public consultation period, the Government received over 13,000 submissions of opinions, of which 98.6% showed support and gave positive comments, indicating that the legislation of Article 23 of the Basic Law has strong popular support.


“We must point out that the entire legislative process at the LegCo was conducted entirely in accordance with the due procedures, with diligent and prudent scrutiny by lawmakers. The Bills Committee, together with the subcommittee earlier set up by the House Committee to study matters relating to Basic Law Article 23 legislation, convened 25 meetings in total, and devoted nearly 50 hours to scrutinise every clause of the bill in detail, raising nearly 1,000 questions and comments, resulting in 91 amendments, most of which were originated from comments by lawmakers.


“Some clauses were even deliberated for more than an hour, reflecting a thorough discussion at LegCo in which every member was meticulous and completed the scrutiny with high quality and efficiency.”


The Hong Kong SAR Government pointed out that protecting human rights and respecting the principle of the rule of law are principles of the Safeguarding National Security Ordinance and have been included in the provisions.


The safeguards and respect to human rights could be manifested in several areas such as the legal provisions including definitions, criminal elements, applicable people and scopes are clear, targeting acts and activities endangering national security with clarity so that the public will not unwittingly violate the law.


The ordinance has given due consideration to protecting the normal commercial activities and the need to engage in international exchanges of the financial, media and various types of organisations in Hong Kong.


However, the US and Western countries, anti-China organisations, anti-China politicians, media, and wanted people having absconded overseas continued to smear, deliberately disregarded the facts and slandered the ordinance, fully exposing their hypocrisy and arrogance as well as their malicious intentions to harm Hong Kong.


The Hong Kong SAR Government stressed that following the successful enactment of the Safeguarding National Security Ordinance, the shortcomings in the legal system and enforcement mechanisms for the Hong Kong SAR to safeguard national security are addressed.


“We must once again emphasise that the ordinance is a piece of legislation to defend against external forces that endanger our national security, acting like a sturdier door and a more effective door lock to defend our home. Only invaders who want to intrude into our home to plunder and loot will not want Hong Kong to legislate to safeguard the country.”


The Hong Kong SAR Government strongly urges these Western countries, anti-China organisations, anti-China politicians, media and wanted persons absconding overseas, all with ulterior motives, to stop smearing and interfering in Hong Kong affairs which are internal affairs of China, adding that their despicable manoeuvre with politics is doomed to fail.

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