On May 21, the Presidium of the Third Session of the 13th National People’s Congress (NPC) of China made a decision to include Hong Kong SAR national security legislation in the agenda of the upcoming session. On May 22, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang stated in his government work report that China will fully and faithfully implement the policy of "One Country, Two Systems", under which the people of Hong Kong govern Hong Kong and the people of Macao govern Macao, with a high degree of autonomy for both regions. China will establish sound legal systems and enforcement mechanisms for safeguarding national security in the two special administrative regions, and see that the governments of the two regions fulfill their constitutional responsibilities. The spokesperson of the Chinese Consulate General in Auckland makes remarks on this issue as follows:
National security is the basic prerequisite for the existence and development of a country. Safeguarding national security concerns the fundamental interest of all Chinese people including Hong Kong people, and is a core requirement and the very foundation of “One Country, Two Systems”. Without “One Country”, “Two Systems” would lose its very foundation. But since the disturbance in Hong Kong in June, 2019, following proposed ordinance amendments, secessionists and radical localists have openly advocated "Independence of Hong Kong", “Self-determination” and “Referendum”, engaging in activities that undermine national unity and split the country. They deliberately disrupted the social order, violently opposed the law enforcement of the police, destroyed public facilities and property, paralyzed the operation of the Legislative Council and the government, severely trampled on the rule of law, damaged social stability, and dealt a severe blow to the economy and people’s well-being. Besides, external forces have stepped up interference in Hong Kong’s affairs, and openly supported and protected these secessionists and radical localists. These behaviors have seriously threatened the sovereignty, unity and territorial integrity of China, jeopardized the political security and public safety of the HKSAR, hit the bottom line of the principle "One Country, Two Systems", and posed real threat to the national security of China.
Article 23 of the Basic Law of the HKSAR stipulates that the HKSAR shall enact laws on its own to prohibit any act of treason, secession, sedition, subversion against the Central People's Government, or theft of state secrets, to prohibit foreign political organizations or bodies from conducting political activities in the HKSAR, and to prohibit political organizations or bodies of the HKSAR from establishing ties with foreign political organizations or bodies. This provision embodies the Central Government’s trust in the HKSAR, and defines the constitutional responsibility and legislative obligation of HKSAR to safeguard national security. However, more than 20 years following Hong Kong's return to the motherland, relevant laws are yet to materialize due to the sabotage and obstruction by those trying to sow trouble in Hong Kong and China at large, as well as external hostile forces. Last year’s prolonged unrest in Hong Kong has greatly undermined Hong Kong’s society and the rule of law, which reveals the problem of absence of legal system and enforcement mechanism of HKSAR to safeguard national security and the grave threats it poses to Hong Kong’s long-term prosperity and stability.
China’s Central Government has the greatest and ultimate responsibility to safeguard national security, and concerns the most about the prosperity and stability of Hong Kong and the well-being of its people. The Central Government won’t sit back idly and watch both internal and external hostile forces exploit Hong Kong unscrupulously by engaging in all kinds of secession and subversion activities, perpetration of terrorism and interference in Hong Kong’s internal affairs. The 4th Plenum of the 19th CPC Central Committee clearly required establishing and improving a legal framework and enforcement mechanism safeguarding national security in the HKSAR. The HKSAR is an inseparable part of China. As the highest organ of state power, the NPC is exercising, in light of new circumstances and requirements, the power enshrined in the constitution to establish and improve at the state level the legal framework and enforcement mechanism for safeguarding national security in the HKSAR, and to uphold and improve the institutional framework of “One Country, Two Systems”. This is fully necessary.
The HKSAR is directly under the authority of the Central People’s Government of China, and its governance must be strictly implemented in accordance with China’s Constitution and the Basic Law. It is also compulsory to support the Chief Executive and the government of Hong Kong in governing by law, safeguard the authority of the rule of law, and punish any law violation according to law. The legislation for upholding national security in the HKSAR in accordance with the Constitution and the Basic Law will further promote Hong Kong’s practice of "One Country, Two Systems", and it is purely a matter of China's internal affairs and no foreign country has the right to interfere.