Washington/Hong Kong: – The United States and allies have lambasted China in an aggressive language by saying that Hong Kong is a symbol of independence and the interests of the international community are connected with its prosperity and stability. The Chinese moves to impose a new law in Hong Kong comes as a jolt to the faith and cooperation of the international community. Through this law, which ends the autonomy of Hong Kong, China is violating the agreement signed with the United Kingdom and also the ‘One Country Two Systems’ provision. The Chinese moves are intensely agitating for the international community. The international community is infuriated because of the Chinese efforts to encroach the autonomy of Hong Kong while the world is busy fighting the Coronavirus crisis. The United States, the United Kingdom and other allies have initiated moves to corner China on different levels.
Last week, China proposed the National Security Law in the parliament to gain absolute control over Hong Kong. The Chinese parliament passed the law on Thursday. As per this law, the security agencies of the Chinese communist rulers will be given a free hand to operate in Hong Kong. The Chinese military and the internal security agencies have already announced that they are ready for deployment in Hong Kong. Although the Chinese government is claiming that this new law is for Chinese sovereignty and security of Hong Kong, the activist groups in Hong Kong are claiming that this will further tighten the iron grip of the Chinese communist government over Hong Kong.
The Chinese efforts to gain control over Hong Kong, at a time when the international community is busy fighting the Coronavirus crisis, have elicited intense reactions at the international level. The United States delivered a major jolt to China, announcing the cancellation of the special status awarded to Hong Kong, even before the Chinese parliament could pass the law. US Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, announced that the United States would withdraw the special status awarded to Hong Kong, as China will end the autonomy of Hong Kong.
The special status awarded by the United States to Hong Kong is based on the joint agreement signed between the United Kingdom and China in 1985. The deal has a provision that the Chinese government will not change the capitalist systems and other fundamental rights in Hong Kong until 2047. The agreement underlines that Hong Kong will be operating under the ‘One Country Two Systems’ policy, and the Chinese government will not impose its communist systems on Hong Kong. But since the last few years, the Chinese rulers seem to be attempting to impose their rules and regulations on Hong Kong.
After the United States withdrew the special status awarded to Hong Kong, other countries too have initiated actions to corner China. As a part of these efforts, the United States, along with the United Kingdom, Canada and Australia have issued a joint statement targeting the activities of the Chinese government in Hong Kong. The statement accuses the Chinese government that the new law will increase the divide in Hong Kong. The statement demands that if China intends to bring the situation in Hong Kong to normal, it must stop its interference and keep the autonomy and fundamental rights of Hong Kong unhindered. The statement also reminds China that Hong Kong has prospered only because of the independence and the freedom enjoyed by the population of Hong Kong.
Following the joint statement issued by the United States and allies, Japan, Taiwan and Europe also have fired salvos of criticism on China. Germany has warned that the Chinese government will have to respect the fundamental law and One Country Two Systems policy which form the constitution of Hong Kong. Whereas, Japan has said that Hong Kong is an important trading partner, and maintaining
its stability and democracy is vital. Taiwan, through an independent declaration, has asserted that it will always stand with the people of Hong Kong.
British Foreign Minister Dominic Raab indicated that the process of awarding the British passport to more than 300,000 Hong Kong residents had been initiated. This statement of British Foreign Minister Raab will open the doors for many entrepreneurs, investors and experts from various fields to return to the United Kingdom, delivering a major jolt to the economic and administrative systems in Hong Kong.
China has retaliated against the pressure exerted by the United States, the United Kingdom and the international community over the Hong Kong issue. Chinese Foreign Ministry said that the interference in the internal matters should be stopped, targeting the United States. Administrative chief of Hong Kong, Carrie Lam, while expressing regret over the US decision, claimed that this decision is a double-edged sword and could affect the interests of the US investors and entrepreneurs.