On May 21, the opening day of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC), China's top political advisory body, CPPCC Chairman and PBSC member Wang Yang in his Report announced: “We will ensure the long-term stability of ‘one country, two systems.’ We will continue to support the improvement of the implementation of the systems and mechanisms of the constitution and Basic Law.” Later that afternoon representatives from Beijing’s Hong Kong and Macao Affairs Office (HKMAO) met Hong Kong Deputies to the NPC to explain details of the National Security Law.  Stanley Ng, a Deputy from the Hongkong SAR to the NPC, who attended the meeting, was quoted by South China Morning Post as saying that the law will ban secession, subversion of state power, foreign interference and terrorism and that the legislation could pass as early as next week.  He said “The social unrest last year showed that the Hong Kong government was unable to handle passing [national security legislation] on its own. Hong Kong’s status will be sacrificed with or without this law if society is unstable due to the protesters’ violence.” Xia Baolong, Vice Chairman of the CPPCC National Committee and recently appointed Director of the HKMAO was also present. Separately, Zhang Yesui, spokesman for the NPC session, told the Chinese media that Hong Kong is an “inseparable” part of China and that national security is the cornerstone of stability in the country. He said “In light of new circumstances and needs, the National People’s Congress is exercising the power that is enshrined in the [Chinese] constitution to establish and improve” Hong Kong’s legal framework.  

The Global Times (May 21) said the CPPCC would also organise people from minority ethnic groups and religious fields to hold coordination meetings; strengthen members from Hong Kong and Macao on their political responsibilities in carrying out their missions centred on the "one China, two systems" principle; firmly support the implementations of the Constitution and the basic law in the SARs, and deepen exchanges between the Chinese mainland and people from Taiwan island. The CPPCC would also deepen work on building consensus. Guided by patriotism and socialism, the CPPCC would seek common ground while shelving differences and building consensus among all domestic and overseas Chinese in realising the Chinese people's rejuvenation.

The seven Politburo Standing Committee members plus Wang Qishan, and the Vice Chairmen of the CPPCC who attended the session were all not wearing masks, while everyone else was.

(Comment: Reports separately say that Beijing will probably apply the law directly to Hongkong SAR bypassing the local legislative process and, according to Hongkong's TVB (May 22), also establish specialised agencies in Hong Kong to enforce the law.)

Subscribe to Newswire | Site Map | Email Us
Centre for China Analysis and Strategy, A-50, Second Floor, Vasant Vihar, New Delhi-110057
Tel: 011 41017353