The United States has slammed China for its transfer to impose a controversial national security law in Hong Kong, with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo saying it’s a “sad day” for the folks of the territory and warning Beijing of new countermeasures.
Chinese President Xi Jinping on Tuesday signed a controversial security regulation that gave Beijing new powers over Hong Kong which might be tailored to crackdown in opposition to dissent, criminalising sedition and successfully curbing protests, amidst world anger and outrage within the former British colony.
In a strongly worded assertion on Tuesday night time, Mr. Pompeo stated, “The Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP) decision to impose draconian national security legislation on Hong Kong destroys the territory’s autonomy and one of China’s greatest achievements.”
“Hong Kong demonstrated to the world what free Chinese people could achieve — one of the most successful economies and vibrant societies in the world,” he stated.
But Beijing’s “paranoia and fear” of its personal folks’s aspirations have led it to eviscerate the very basis of the territory’s success, turning ‘One Country, Two Systems’ into ‘One Country, One System’, the US Secretary of State stated. “Today marks a sad day for Hong Kong, and for freedom-loving people across China.”
Civil liberties, together with the fitting to protest, freedom of speech and the independence of the judiciary, have been enshrined in Hong Kong’s mini-constitution known as ‘Basic Law’, which got here into impact with the top of British management in 1997.
The 50-year settlement, in impact, presents Hong Kong a “one country, two systems” precept, guaranteeing it the rights and freedoms that don’t exist in mainland China.
Mr. Pompeo stated the United States will proceed to face with the freedom-loving folks of Hong Kong and reply to Beijing’s assaults on freedoms of speech, the press, and meeting, in addition to the rule of regulation, all of which have, till now, allowed the territory to flourish.
He rued that the CCP’s motion demonstrates as soon as once more that Beijing’s commitments — on this case the 1984 Sino-British Joint Declaration and the Basic Law — have been “empty phrases“.
The Chinese Communist Party promised 50 years of freedom to the Hong Kong folks, and gave them solely 23. Within the previous few years, Beijing has additionally violated its agreements with the World Health Organization, the World Trade Organization, and the United Nations, Mr. Pompeo stated.
“This is a sample the world can’t ignore,” he stated, including that the United States won’t stand idly by whereas China “swallows Hong Kong into its authoritarian maw”.
“Last week, we imposed visa restrictions on CCP officials responsible for undermining Hong Kong’s autonomy. We are ending defense and dual-use technology exports to the territory. As per President (Donald) Trump’s instruction, we will eliminate policy exemptions that give Hong Kong different and special treatment, with few exceptions,” he stated.
In a associated motion, the United States on Tuesday suspended any License Exceptions for exports and re-exports to Hong Kong, and transfers inside the territory of gadgets topic to the Export Administration Regulations that present differential therapy than these out there to China.
A day earlier, the Commerce Department rules affording preferential therapy to Hong Kong over China, together with the provision of export license exceptions, have been suspended.
“Further actions to eliminate differential treatment are also being evaluated. We urge Beijing to immediately reverse course and fulfil the promises it has made to the people of Hong Kong and the world,” Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross stated.
Congressman John Curtis, a member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, led a bipartisan coalition to introduce the Hong Kong Safe Harbor Act, which might designate the folks of Hong Kong as Priority 2 refugees, streamlining their admission course of to the US and opening up an asylum route for frontline activists in rapid hazard.
The Senate companion invoice is led by Senators Marco Rubio, Bob Menendez, Todd Young and Ben Cardin.
The world witnessed the braveness of Hong Kong’s pro-democracy activists, who final yr took to the streets to defend their autonomy from China’s authoritarian grip, Rubio stated.
“Following final night time’s implementation of Beijing’s National Security Law, the US should assist the folks of Hong Kong protect their society at residence and discover refuge for many who face persecution for exercising the rights as soon as assured beneath the Joint Declaration.
“Through the Hong Kong Safe Harbor Act, our nation would supply a safe-haven to many Hong Kongers who’ve tirelessly fought in opposition to tyranny,” he stated.