China has once again lambasted the United Kingdom and the United States for their “interference” in the domestic affairs of Hong Kong, China’s global financial hub city, stressing that Beijing will resolutely push forward with a decision to impose a recently passed national security law over the territory.
“Unwarranted foreign interference in Hong Kong’s affairs will only make China more determined in advancing the national security legislation for Hong Kong,” said Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Hua Chunying in a press conference on Friday.
Her comments came in response to a so-called Six-monthly Report by London on Hong Kong issued a day earlier, criticizing Beijing’s decision about the national security legislation.
“The UK has no sovereignty, jurisdiction or right to supervise Hong Kong, nor does it have any so-called ‘responsibility’,” Hua stressed, saying that Beijing has repeatedly expounded on its solemn position on the national security legislation for the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region.
Hong Kong returned from British to Chinese rule in 1997.
In June last year, unprecedented anti-government protests began in Hong Kong over a proposed extradition bill. It was shelved under pressure from rallies later on, but the turbulent demonstrations continued the next several months and became more violent, endangering the lives and property of citizens.
The protesters have been demanding Hong Kong’s full secession since then. Beijing says the US and Britain have been fanning the flames of the unrest in the semi-autonomous hub by supporting the separatist protesters.
Last month, Hong Kong’s legislature debated and passed a Beijing-proposed bill, criminalizing sedition, secession and subversion against the mainland. The law drew harsh criticism from some Western governments, particularly the US and the UK, which claim that the law threatens the semi-autonomous stance of the city.
Beijing, however, insists that the new law does not pose a threat to Hong Kong’s autonomy and the interests of foreign investors, noting that it is merely meant to prevent terrorism and foreign interference there, which were evident in the violent riots there against the government last year.
“I would like to stress that the Chinese government is firmly committed to implementing ‘one country, two systems’ principle fully and faithfully, safeguarding national sovereignty, security and development interests, and upholding Hong Kong’s long-term prosperity and stability,” the Chinese foreign ministry spokeswoman further said.
“Hong Kong is China’s Hong Kong. The UK should face up to reality, respect China’s sovereignty, security and unity, and stop interfering in Hong Kong’s affairs in any way,” Hua added.
Elsewhere in her remarks, Hua also denounced the US interference in the legislation as a complete violation of international law, saying that if Washington took actions to harm the interests of Hong Kong, it would only backfire on itself.
On Thursday, US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin had said that he was working on various capital market responses to the security law, including some measures that could restrict capital flow through the territory.