UPDATE: UK's six-monthly report on HK shows fullest double standard: Carrie Lam

Source: Global Times Published: 2020/11/24 12:48:40

Chief Executive of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) Carrie Lam delivered a speech at the inauguration ceremony of China Federation of Literacy and Art Circles Hong Kong Member Association in Hong Kong, south China, Nov. 18, 2020. (Xinhua/Li Gang)

The UK government's latest six-monthly report on Hong Kong shows its extreme irresponsibility and "fullest double standard," Hong Kong government and Chief Executive Carrie Lam said, condemning the report and vowing to stick to principles and maintain governance by law. 

"In the past year, several foreign governments have unreasonably criticized Hong Kong affairs, and each time the Special Administrative Region (SAR) government has justifiably refuted them, and their double standards," Lam wrote on her Facebook page on Monday. "The UK Foreign Secretary's six-monthly report on Hong Kong brings this 'double-standard' to its fullest."

The HKSAR government later published a statement condemning the so-called "six-monthly report", saying it is "sweeping attacks and groundless accusations" on several recent developments in Hong Kong. 

"No one is more committed to 'One Country, Two Systems' than the Central People's Government," the HKSAR government said in the statement.

Rebutting the report's claims that the National Security Law in Hong Kong is a breach of the "One Country, Two Systems" principle and Hong Kong's promised high degree of autonomy, Lam referred to the UK's comprehensive set of laws to maintain national security, and its renowned secret intelligence agencies, MI5 and MI6.

"The National Security Law in Hong Kong entrusts the HKSAR with the primary responsibility of maintaining national security. I find it hard to imagine that the UK would leave national security to local governments and local police," wrote Lam, "Isn't this the way to uphold 'One Country, Two Systems' and respect the high degree of autonomy of the SAR?" 

"It was hailed by some 2.9 million Hong Kong people as the turning point for Hong Kong to find a way out of the difficulties and to restore order from chaos," the SAR government stated, "Indeed, in the past few months since implementation of the National Security Law which was included in Annex III to the Basic Law for local promulgation, violence has significantly subsided and Hong Kong people could once again enjoy their basic rights and freedoms in accordance with the law."

In response to the report's criticism of the NPC Standing Committee's decision on the qualifications of Hong Kong Legislative Council members, Lam pointed out that it is right and proper for public officials to take the oath of allegiance to the national system and uphold the laws of the country.

Lam again pointed out the double standards of the UK, saying, "It is general international practice. Anyone in the UK who refuses to pledge allegiance to the Queen will not be able to take office as a legislator."

Lam then vowed to stick to principles and maintain the governance of law with the SAR government. 

The Office of the Commissioner of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs also condemned the UK's report, stating that the UK is grossly interfering in China's internal affairs, and openly trampling on the principles of international law and the basic norms of international relations. 

The spokesperson of the Office also pointed out that it is the UK that has reneged on its promises. 

"The UK insisted on promoting the British National (Overseas) Passport visa policy, unilaterally suspending the agreement on the surrender of fugitive offenders with Hong Kong, wantonly undermining normal economic and trade cooperation between the two sides, and threatening to interfere in the judicial and legal affairs of the SAR," said the spokesperson, "So who is it undermining 'One Country, Two Systems'?"

On Monday, the UK's Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs unveiled the 47th six-monthly report on Hong Kong, accusing China of acting in violation of the 1984 Sino-British Joint Declaration, in which no single word or clause grants the UK any responsibility over Hong Kong after the city's return. 

Global Times


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