The end of Hong Kong is being prepared

History is repeating itself in Hong Kong. After the SARS epidemic in 2003, attempts were made to introduce a national security law. Now as the coronavirus recedes the national security has been passed.

May 31, 2020

By Fr Gianni Criveller, PIME
History is repeating itself in Hong Kong. After the SARS epidemic in 2003, attempts were made to introduce a national security law. Now as the coronavirus recedes the national security has been passed.

It is difficult to find words to describe the danger Hong Kong is facing. For some who have not seen the tanks in Hong Kong may think that things have not got out of hand.

On May 18, 15 well-known leaders of the democratic opposition appeared in court. Their case will be resumed on June 15. For five of them, the charges have been extended, and they foresee very severe penalties, up to five years of imprisonment.

But the worst news from Beijing is that the National People’s Congress has formally endorsed what had already been decided by the Central Committee of the Communist Party, the real body that governs China. But even the Central Committee (politburo) counts less since President Xi Jinping concentrated all powers on himself, as only Mao Zedong and Deng Xiaoping had done in the past. It is, therefore, a decision by Xi that we are talking about.

The new law sends a chill down the spines of those who love Hong Kong, its young students and its people, freedom and democracy. It introduces national security regulations in Hong Kong. It is included as a new “third annex” to the Basic Law, the mini-constitution that governs the “high degree of autonomy” of the city.

The law, which consists of seven articles, provides provisions for punishing offenses such as treason, secession, sedition, subversion and foreign interference. It is not difficult to imagine how the provisions will be conveniently used to suppress the popular protests that began in June 2019 and any other form of opposition. With such laws in China, every form of dissent is condemned, with punishments up to the death penalty.

Particularly disturbing is the fourth article: “If necessary, the central government will establish bodies in Hong Kong with the task of implementing the safeguarding of national security.”

This provision would lead to the emptying of the power of parliament and of the local government in favour of an entirely political office, which has never been seen in Hong Kong. The drastic downsizing of the parliament is particularly of concern because in the September elections, the opposition parties will have, according to all forecasts, a larger representation as happened for the district elections of last November.

It will be the end of the “one country, two systems” framework with the “high degree of autonomy,” the two principles that govern Hong Kong today. These two principles will be tested during the crucial events of the weeks to come: the vigil for the massacre in Tiananmen Square on June 4; the first anniversary of the start of the protests on June 9; and the traditional protest march of July 1.

In the summer of 2003, attempts were made to introduce a national security law. And it happened in the aftermath of the SARS epidemic.
Today’s government, led by Carrie Lam, has faced hundreds of demonstrations, most of them more intense than that of July 1, 2003. There has been a new pandemic, and the new security law, a liberticidal law that will not only prevent Hong Kong from having what it was promised — a progressive and full democratisation — but would also remove what it already has now.

Carrie Lam will go down in Hong Kong history as the single political figure that has done the most damage ever.
The threats of a regime opposed to freedom, democracy and human rights are not intended to strike emptily. As long as possible, we will say it: the end of Hong Kong is being prepared. --ucanews.com

Total Comments:0

Name
Email
Comments