09/25/2018, 11.31
HONG KONG - CHINA
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Hong Kong bans Independence Party

Thanks to a law dating to British era, the executive of the former colony was able to ban the small group (HKNP) from political activity. United States, Great Britain and the EU express "concern", but Beijing replies in a peremptory way: "Do not intervene in our internal affairs under the guise of so-called freedom of speech and association".

Hong Kong (AsiaNews / Agencies) - The Hong Kong government has banned the local Nationalist Party (HKNP), which aspires to the independence of the former British colony. According to the authorities, the ban on political activities is justified by an old law dating to the British colonial times: this prohibits "activities also policies that endanger national security". Beijing, which has observed the unfolding of events in the background, warns "States or foreign organizations" that foment pro- independence sentiments in the Territory.

This is the first time ever for the Hong Kong executive to explicitly prohibit a party from operating. According to many analysts, it is the "final proof" of China's interference in local affairs. Returning to the motherland in 1997, Hong Kong enjoys a certain degree of freedom guaranteed by the formula "One country, two systems". In practice, Beijing has promised to keep Basic Law, a small democratic constitution inherited from the British, in force for 50 years from its return.

However, the record shows that this freedom is being eroded step by step. The most striking case in recent years has been that of publishers critical of the Chinese Communist Party, who were in fact abducted by the communist authorities and released after time.

The Hong Kong justice secretary denies Chinese pressure on the Nationalist party's situation: "The group has spread hatred and discrimination against the Chinese of the motherland". And this is part of the violations of British law, which allows the government the political gag in cases "related to national security, public order, protection of rights and the freedom of others".

Representatives from the United States, Great Britain and the European Union expressed "concern" over this decision. But the Chinese Foreign Affairs Commissioner with responsibility for Hong Kong responded with a harsh statement, which peremptorily imposes "governments and groups of various kinds" to "respect the decision of the former colonial government". "We urge organisations of countries concerned in Hong Kong … to stop intervening in Hong Kong and China’s internal affairs under the guise of so-called ‘freedom of speech and association’, and to stop issuing wrong signals to Hong Kong independence forces,” the statement said.

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