21st May 2020 – (Hong Kong) The sudden announcement of the National Security Law on the eve of the week before the anti-extradition protest anniversary and before the legislative elections in September has shocked Hong Kong’s political arena. According to multiple sources, the Chinese side has taken a hard line to formulate a set of national security laws applicable to Hong Kong. The reason is that Hong Kong has been in chaos in recent years. The pan-democratic factions have repeatedly been colluding with external forces to intervene in Hong Kong affairs, blatantly demanding sanctions against high-ranking officials in the city.
Protest against Hong Kong ’s amendments to the extradition law broke out in June last year, and it is still lingering until today. On the one hand, the government ’s prestige of governance has been thwarted, on the other hand, radical protesters became more violent by burning national flags, severely provoking the Chinese government and challenging the principle of Hong Kong’s one country, two systems.
Since then, there have been calls of pro-Beijing camp to lay the foundation for the looming Hong Kong version of the national security law. Another fact that lies before us is that the Hong Kong government has suffered a lot from its anti-extradition proposal. It has not only failed to become executive-led, it has been challenged by the general public and even straggling when it promotes policies or applies for funding in the Legislative Council. In the short to medium term, there is no hope of reversing the confidence level in Hong Kong government’s high-ranking officials.
At this moment, although it is less than 4 months before the September Legislative Council elections, the traditional wisdom of the political community was that the Hong Kong government avoided introducing controversial policies and recommendations before the election. However, in response to an uncontrollable chaos in Hong Kong for the past six months, the central government officials involved in Hong Kong affairs have decided that the issue of safeguarding national security must not be delayed. Some politicians have pointed out that all these have caused China to break the same old grounds to create new ones.
Hence, the government may not hesitate to spawn the Hong Kong version of the National Security Law before the election in September. Beijing announced today that the National People’s Congress (NPC) will draft “Establishing and Improving the Legal System and Enforcement Mechanisms for Hong Kong to Safeguard National Security” at a full session tomorrow. It is expected that the law will be added to Annex III of the Basic Law without the Legislative Council ’s deliberation to solve the” shortcomings “of national security that have plagued Hong Kong for more than 20 years.
As for the far-reaching reasons for the introduction of the Hong Kong version of the National Security Act, some politicians have an analysis that can be traced back to the outbreak of Occupy Central in 2014. At that time, external forces had already interfered in Hong Kong affairs. In recent years, pan-democrats have been lobbying foreign politicians to join the same front to make sanctions against Hong Kong. Some politicians estimate that their actions have already crossed the line and precipitated China to take the first initiative by enacting the National Security Law to safeguard Hong Kong’s prosperity, stability and long-term stability.