HKSAR gov’t rebuts EU report on Hong Kong, calls for mutually beneficial relations


HONG KONG, July 23 (Xinhua) — The Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) government Thursday rebutted a report on Hong Kong by the European Union (EU) as unfounded, and called on EU member states to bear in mind the mutually beneficial relations between the two sides.

In response to the report on Hong Kong issued by the European Commission and the High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, the HKSAR government said it could not agree with remarks in the report about the implementation of “one country, two systems” in Hong Kong.

“To uphold and implement the principle of ‘one country, two systems’ meets the interests of the Hong Kong people, responds to the needs of maintaining Hong Kong’s prosperity and stability, and serves the fundamental interests of the nation,” a spokesman of the HKSAR government said. The central government has made it clear that it will unswervingly implement the policy of “one country, two systems.”

“But this has to be premised on a correct understanding of the relationship between ‘one country’ and ‘two systems’,” the spokesman said, adding that first and foremost is to firmly uphold national sovereignty, security and development interests.

Stressing that “for whatever reason, no one is above the law,” the spokesman noted that “throughout the months of street violence and confrontations, there has been no fatality caused by the police whereas an innocent man was killed by rioters, another seriously burnt and hundreds of frontline policemen injured.”

The Hong Kong police always handle public meetings and processions in a fair, just and impartial manner in accordance with the laws of Hong Kong, he emphasized.

While the EU report mentioned that the HKSAR 2019 District Council Election was held “peacefully,” the spokesman said “the truth is, in the lead-up to the voting day, individuals including some candidates were assaulted and their properties were damaged.”

“The total number of complaints received was the highest ever, and the increase was alarming,” he said. “In particular, 1,458 cases of complaints involved criminal damage, use of violence and intimidation. Any irresponsible act with the intent to compromise an election should not be tolerated.”

On the European Commission’s remarks on the law recently enacted by the National People’s Congress Standing Committee for the HKSAR to safeguard national security, the spokesman said, “This is constitutional, lawful, rational and reasonable as national security falls squarely under the purview of the central authorities and after some 23 years, the HKSAR has yet to fulfil its constitutional obligations to enact local legislation to safeguard national security.”

The EU report mentioned that individual country or parliament has introduced measures or acts targeting Hong Kong. The spokesman said these are flagrant violations of international law and could hardly be in the interest of Hong Kong residents and bilateral partners.

Hong Kong and EU member states maintain close economic and trade relations, and have been nurturing bilateral cultural and technological cooperation in recent years, he said.

“The HKSAR government calls on the EU member states to adopt a pragmatic and rational attitude, and bear in mind the mutually beneficial relations between the two sides.” Enditem


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