Washington has no right to define HK’s high degree of autonomy

Source:Global Times Published: 2019/9/9 11:08:39

Photo: VCG/Xinhua

With US Senate and House leaders from both parties pledging to advance the so-called Hong Kong Human Rights and Democracy Act, some radical activists demonstrated again on Sunday, calling on US Congress to pass the bill as soon as possible. 

A small number of Hong Kong's most extreme demonstrators have gone into a fit of hysteria, announcing that should their demands not be met, they would rather destroy everything.

The main tenets of the bill include sanctions against officials who undermine Hong Kong's high degree of autonomy and a request for an annual justification for the special treatment afforded by Washington to Hong Kong. 

The aim is to place pressure on Beijing and the HKSAR government. It is believed the city will face uncertainty once the law is passed, weakening conditions that support its status as an international financial center.

If the US passes the bill to interfere in Hong Kong's internal affairs, it would not be for the sake of the city, but rather to turn the financial hub into a card Washington can use to increase pressure on Beijing. The US will only decide its policy toward Hong Kong based on American interests. 

Who cares more about Hong Kong's long-term stability and prosperity, Beijing or Washington? It is a no-brainer. While Beijing is responsible for the well-being of Hong Kong society and Washington is an onlooker. The ongoing chaos does not affect US government but is a good opportunity for the US lawmakers to put on a show. Given a choice between a good Hong Kong and using its turmoil to make trouble for Beijing, why don't they choose the latter?

The passage of the bill would constitute as a deep intervention in Hong Kong affairs, but it won't become a leverage to influence Beijing's decisions on the city's affairs.

Beijing will firmly uphold the Basic Law and respect Hong Kong's high degree of autonomy. Hong Kong is experiencing serious turmoil. Beijing supports the joint efforts of the HKSAR government and the city's mainstream society to stop the violence, curb chaos, and restore order. 

This attitude was clear from the start and had nothing to do with whether the US passing the bill. 

On the other hand, if the situation in Hong Kong gets out of control, leading to subversive disorder and humanitarian disaster among society, Beijing will definitely take action in accordance with the Basic Law. Washington's attitude will not influence any decisions made by the Chinese central government.  

The great uncertainty for quite some time is whether the cohesion of Chinese society can be consolidated in the long run. The performance of the US and the West around Hong Kong has offered Chinese society a solid lesson.

China has the ability to move forward getting rid of US interference. Hong Kong's special custom status is not a boon the US gives the city. It is mutually beneficial in nature. The city's future will depend on how strong China is, and not on US attitude toward Hong Kong. "One country, two systems" must be practiced jointly by the Chinese mainland and Hong Kong. It won't be defined by the US.

Posted in: EDITORIAL

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