Most controversially, the law empowered Beijing to authorize jurisdiction over selected criminal cases, making it the first time in Hong Kong history that suspects could be tried on the mainland and potentially deported in the face of prison time.
This was the fears of those who pulled protests against a return bill last year by the Hong Kong government. These protests eventually forced this law to be abandoned, but Beijing turned into a broader anti-government unrest requiring the implementation of new national security arrangements.
As he wrote on Twitter, the new law effectively established a parallel judiciary (and) removed his comment and final jurisdiction from the courts of Hong Kong. ”
In a statement, the city’s general manager, Carrie Lam, said the law would “ensure the long-term prosperity and stability of Hong Kong” and reiterated that “it would target only a very small minority” and the proposed bill was “in line with the rule of law” and “in Hong Kong. Rights and freedoms applicable under the Basic Law and related international conventions. “
When Hong Kong was handed over from British to Chinese in 1997, the city’s common legal system remained largely intact. The precedent remained in force, and the new de facto constitution, Basic Law, and protections under various international treaties guaranteed an unprecedented degree of justice and freedom in China, where the conviction rate was 90% north.
The new national security law would change all of this. According to details released over the weekend, Chinese security bodies will have the power to exercise “jurisdiction” over “national security cases” under certain circumstances, while other prosecutions under the law are Beijing’s designated leader in the city.
It is not clear whether the suspects could return to China’s mainland under these circumstances.
Although the draft refers to “the rule of law” and the promotion of various civil liberties, it subordinates the existing law to the national security bill, so that there is a national security law when there is a conflict. In practice, this may mean that these rights are suspended when a national security prosecution is against human rights protected under Hong Kong law.
“The handover was obviously the Takeover,” Cohen added.
“It’s just everything they say,” he added. “And if something can’t do what they say when they want it, they’ll change it the way they want it.”
Such provisions came with a visible push to Chinese companies to re-list the city’s stock exchanges and revive the local economy, as well as a huge propaganda effort to sell the bill, as well as posters and advertisements that encourage Hong Kong to roll up.
These judges are appointed by the chief executive, but their presence in some cases is open to debate in China, which calls for their removal or prevents them from certain sensitive cases. By giving Lam the power to nominate judges to hear national security cases, the government essentially lifts this issue and allows him to choose the most loyal judges.
Extending the power of Chinese courts and security services to Hong Kong worries even more.
Allowing China’s security apparatus to operate in the city raises the specter of illegal persecution. Opponents and activists in China often disappear by officials or threatened to be arrested around sensitive incidents, and many journalists and lawyers are dragged to “get tea” with security consequences while receiving subtle threats about their potential consequences. their jobs.
Meanwhile, granting the jurisdiction of the Chinese courts “under certain conditions” will guarantee convictions in these cases. China’s legal system has been widely criticized for its human rights protection, bare political prosecution and an almost universal conviction rate. The country’s own national security law has been widely interpreted in the past as imprisoning activists, intellectuals and journalists.
Similarly, Hong Kong guarantees its rights under the Basic Law and by becoming a party to international conventions, but draft national security law overrides these protections.