National security law for HK likely to be 'enacted by end of this month'

China's draft of the national security law for Hong Kong has been submitted for deliberation to the ongoing three-day 19th session of the Standing Committee of the 13th National People's Congress (NPC), according to the spokesperson's office of the Legislative Affairs Commission of the NPC Standing Committee.

The draft of the national security law makes clear provisions on preventing, stopping and punishing four types of criminal acts in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) - acts of secession, subversion of state power, terrorist activities and collusion with foreign forces to endanger national security. 

Beijing's move to push the national security law in Hong Kong it the latest and most severe clampdown on the cherished liberties that differentiate Hong Kong and mainland China.

Several Hong Kong legal experts told the state media Global Times that the Standing Committee of the 13th NPC is likely to hold another session at the end of this month, during which legislators may vote for the draft law. 

This week, Beijing’s top legislature said the law would permit the extradition of fugitives in Hong Kong to mainland China to stand trial—effectively undoing last year’s withdrawal of a controversial extradition bill.

The foreign ministers of the US, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the UK, and the EU's High Representative issued a joint statement on Wednesday, in which they claimed the national security law for Hong Kong doesn't conform to Hong Kong's Basic Law and China's international commitments under the principles of the Sino-British Joint Declaration. They also stated the law risks seriously undermining the "one country, two systems" principle and the territory's high degree of autonomy. 

Just shortly before the draft of the national security law for Hong Kong was submitted for deliberation to China's top legislature on Thursday, the G7 nations urged China to reconsider the law.

(Photo: Amnesty International holds a petition outside the Liaison Office of Beijing in Hong Kong against the introduction of national security law in Hong Kong on June 19,2020. Photo by Sunny Mok/EYEPRESS)

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