Rule of Law and Rationality: the common will of the Hong Kong people
2019-08-20 00:58

Recently, a string of protests and violent incidents dominated the news of Hong Kong after the government of Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) tried to discuss the amendments to the Fugitive Offenders Ordinance and Mutual Legal Assistance in Criminal Matters Ordinance. The situation and its development have drawn widespread attention from various sides, including Norwegian friends. Eyes of concerns are most on the picture of TV. What is the actual situation in Hong Kong and its possible development? I'd like to introduce some facts for Norwegian people for clarifying the doubts or misunderstandings.

The purpose of the proposed amendment to the two ordinances is to plug the legal loopholes exposed by a gruesome homicide case, in which the Taiwanese authorities were unable to prosecute a Hong Kong resident accused of killing his pregnant girlfriend in Taiwai before fleeing back to Hong Kong. However, such a normal legal agenda aimed at upholding justice has been used by some people to incite public opinion and create chaos in Hong Kong. On June 15th, the HKSAR government announced the decision of suspending the amendment, in order to solicit more opinions from the public. Yet, some people with ulterior motives couldn't accept such an early stop and continued to create chaos in Hong Kong.

On July 1st, the day on which the 22nd anniversary of Hong Kong's return to the motherland was being celebrated, radical protesters stormed the Hong Kong Legislative Council building, tore up the copies of the Basic Law of the HKSAR and smeared the emblem of the HKSAR.

On July 14th, radical protesters attacked the police with corrosive liquids and toxic powders, even had one policeman's finger bitten off. Some went further to human flesh search and publish the policemen's family information online, and viciously cursed their dependents online.

On July 21st, radical protesters blocked the Liaison Office of China's Central Government in the HKSAR, defaced the national emblem and painted words insulting the country and nation. The police found a large amount of explosives intended for use in the violent demonstrations during search operations.

On August 3rd, radical protesters removed the Chinese national flags from a flagpole in Tsim Sha Tsui and later flung the flag into the sea.

On August 5th, radical protesters began to agitate strikes. To prevent the ordinary citizens from getting to work, they even obstruct the automatic subway train doors from closing to stop the departure and blocked several other traffic arteries.

On August 11th, some rioters hurled petrol bombs and aiming high-power laser guns at police officers in various places. At least one police officer was hit and suffered burns in his legs. 

Since August 12th, demonstrators gathered at the Hong Kong airport unlawfully to obstruct the normal operation of the  airport, resulting in the cancellation of more than 400 flights and the closure of the airport. What's even more outrageous is that, two inhabitants from the mainland - one journalist and one traveler were besieged, illegally held and brutally beaten by the radical protesters.

Up to now, the violence and riots have not ceased. They have completely broken the bottom line to freedom of speech and peaceful demonstration, trampled on the rule of law in Hong Kong, and challenged the basic line of "one country, two systems". Hong Kong has come to a critical juncture, and it's way forward touches the hearts of those who do love and care about Hong Kong.

First of all, the violence in Hong Kong must be stopped in accordance with the law. If the violence and riots are allowed to continue, it will not only endanger the lives and property of the citizens, but will also ruin the rule of law, the prosperity and future of Hong Kong, which ultimately the whole society has to pay for. Therefore the top priorities for Hong Kong are stopping violence, upholding the rule of law and restoring order unconditionally. The Hong Kong police exercised maximum restraint and minimum use of necessary force in dealing with demonstration and riots, who should deserve the respect and firm support from all of us.

Secondly, the mainstream public opinion in Hong Kong is to sustain stability and peace. In a society which has always advocated the rule of law and rationality, different opinions, which are natural, should be expressed and resolved in a peaceful and legal manner. At present, more and more Hong Kong inhabitants are standing up against violence. Hundreds of thousands residents have already held two huge rallies to show their support to the HKSAR government and the police. Meanwhile, we have noted that the majority of young students participating in the demonstrations differ from the gangs of extreme radicals. We call on them to stay objective and rational, avoiding being used as cannon fodder. The HKSAR government and the whole society are exploring all possible ways for promoting economic development and improvement of people's livelihood, especially to help young people deal with practical difficulties in housing, education and employment.

Thirdly, external forces must stop meddling in Hong Kong affairs. Some external forces and even diplomatic missions have played a disgraceful role in escalating the situation. They overtly support, direct and fund the protests and violence, crave nothing short of Hong Kong's chaos. Some media from the west have also provided fuel and deliberately whitewashed the violent activities. We welcome the rational and constructive voice but firmly oppose provocation and arbitrary intervention.

Hong Kong is part of China. No one cares more about Hong Kong than the Chinese people. It is the common will of the people to maintain the rule of law and stability in Hong Kong. The development of Hong Kong since its return to the motherland has fully demonstrated that the policy of "One Country, Two Systems" provides the best institutional arrangement to ensure Hong Kong's long-term prosperity and stability, and should be fully applied without being bent or distorted. The Central Government of China firmly extends its full support to the HKSAR government in carrying out governance in accordance with the laws, resolutely supports the Hong Kong police enforcing the law, resolutely support restoring the rule of law and stability in Hong Kong, and resolutely support Hong Kong's prosperity and development.

Recently, all friends in Norway I met endorsed my view. Some friends also expressed their concerns on Norwegian interest in or related to Hong Kong. I do believe the rule of law and rationality are of the greatest interest not only for Hong Kong but all other stakeholders.


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