Leg­is­la­tion to sup­port and en­hance ‘one coun­try, two sys­tems’: Luo

China Daily (Hong Kong) - - HONG KONG - PRO­VIDED TO CHINA DAILY

Luo Huin­ing, direc­tor of the Li­ai­son Of­fice of the Cen­tral Peo­ple’s Govern­ment in the Hong Kong Spe­cial Ad­min­is­tra­tive Re­gion, ad­dresses a launch­ing cer­e­mony of events mark­ing the 23rd an­niver­sary of Hong Kong’s re­turn to the moth­er­land on Wed­nes­day.

For the tiny mi­nor­ity who en­dan­ger na­tional se­cu­rity, this law will be a sword hang­ing over their heads. For the vast ma­jor­ity of Hong Kong res­i­dents in­clud­ing for­eign­ers in Hong Kong, the law will be a ‘guardian’ that pro­tects their rights, free­doms and peace­ful life.’’ Luo Huin­ing, direc­tor of the Li­ai­son Of­fice of the Cen­tral Peo­ple’s Govern­ment in the Hong Kong Spe­cial Ad­min­is­tra­tive Re­gion

Editor’s note: Luo Huin­ing, direc­tor of the Li­ai­son Of­fice of the Cen­tral Peo­ple’s Govern­ment in the Hong Kong Spe­cial Ad­min­is­tra­tive Re­gion, de­liv­ered a speech on Wed­nes­day to com­mem­o­rate the 23rd an­niver­sary of Hong Kong’s re­turn­ing to the moth­er­land and the newly-en­acted na­tional se­cu­rity law for the city. The fol­low­ing is the full text of Luo’s speech.

Re­spected Vice-Chair­men Tung Chee-hwa, Le­ung Chun-ying Re­spected Chief Ex­ec­u­tive Car­rie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor, Chairman Tam Kam-kau Dis­tin­guished guests and friends Good morn­ing!

To­day marks the 23rd an­niver­sary of Hong Kong’s re­turn to the moth­er­land, and the first day that the Law of the Peo­ple’s Repub­lic of China on Safe­guard­ing Na­tional Se­cu­rity in the Hong Kong Spe­cial Ad­min­is­tra­tive Re­gion has taken ef­fect upon gazettal. The va­ri­ety of events staged by dif­fer­ent sec­tors of Hong Kong to “mark the re­turn of Hong Kong and the en­act­ment of the Na­tional Se­cu­rity Law” are brim­ming with feel­ings of ju­bi­la­tion and joy, and are of declar­a­tive and land­mark sig­nif­i­cance.

To­day we gather to mark the an­niver­sary of Hong Kong’s re­turn.We take pride in the suc­cess­ful prac­tice of “one coun­try, two sys­tems” over the past 23 years. The day of the han­dover de­clared the end of more than 150 years of hu­mil­i­a­tion, and saw Hong Kong em­bark­ing on a broad path of com­mon developmen­t and in­te­gra­tion with the main­land. In pre-han­dover Hong Kong un­der Bri­tish colo­nial rule, Hong Kong com­pa­tri­ots were re­duced to sec­ond-class ci­ti­zens in terms of po­lit­i­cal rights, and there were no demo­cratic rights to speak of. Pub­lic data re­vealed that Bri­tain’s eco­nomic plun­der from Hong Kong was as­tro­nom­i­cal, amount­ing to HK$22.1 bil­lion in mil­i­tary ex­penses alone for the Bri­tish gar­ri­son troops be­tween 1950 and 1997. After the han­dover, Hong Kong com­pa­tri­ots be­came the masters of the spe­cial ad­min­is­tra­tive re­gion, and are now en­joy­ing un­prece­dented demo­cratic rights and free­doms. The cen­tral govern­ment im­poses no levies on the spe­cial ad­min­is­tra­tive re­gion, nor does it re­quest the SAR to pay for the PLA Hong Kong Gar­ri­son troops. It has un­veiled a raft of fa­vor­able poli­cies in sup­port of Hong Kong’s developmen­t, and has helped Hong Kong suc­cess­fully fend off two in­ter­na­tional fi­nan­cial crises. In the bat­tles against the Se­vere Acute Res­pi­ra­tory Syn­drome and the COVID-19 pan­demic, the main­land spared no ef­fort in se­cur­ing med­i­cal and daily sup­plies for Hong Kong. This has fully demon­strated that the cen­tral govern­ment has Hong Kong and its peo­ple close at heart, and takes the ut­most care for Hong Kong’s over­all in­ter­ests and the fun­da­men­tal well­be­ing of Hong Kong com­pa­tri­ots.

To­day we gather to mark the an­niver­sary of Hong Kong’s re­turn.

We feel heart­ened that the Na­tional Se­cu­rity Law will help safe­guard Hong Kong’s “one coun­try, two sys­tems”, an in­no­va­tive ar­range­ment that is indica­tive of the po­lit­i­cal wis­dom and mag­na­nim­ity of the Chi­nese com­mu­nists, and of the Chi­nese na­tion’s unique con­tri­bu­tion to world civ­i­liza­tion. This un­prece­dented prac­tice will con­tinue to be fur­ther en­riched and de­vel­oped dur­ing the course of im­ple­men­ta­tion. The Ex­tra­di­tion Bill In­ci­dent of last year ex­posed the great risk fac­ing Hong Kong in safe­guard­ing na­tional se­cu­rity, pos­ing grave chal­lenge to the prac­tice of “one coun­try, two sys­tems”. Against this back­ground, the Na­tional Peo­ple’s Congress Stand­ing Com­mit­tee en­acted the Law of the Peo­ple’s Repub­lic of China on Safe­guard­ing Na­tional Se­cu­rity in the Hong Kong Spe­cial Ad­min­is­tra­tive Re­gion in ac­cor­dance with the Con­sti­tu­tion and the Ba­sic Law — a move set to but­tress and round off the mech­a­nisms of “one coun­try, two sys­tems”. For the tiny mi­nor­ity who en­dan­ger na­tional se­cu­rity, this law will be a sword hang­ing over their heads. For the vast ma­jor­ity of Hong Kong res­i­dents in­clud­ing for­eign­ers in Hong Kong, the law will be a “guardian” that pro­tects their rights, free­doms and peace­ful life. With the elapse of time, we’ve come to re­al­ize that the pro­mul­ga­tion of the Na­tional Se­cu­rity Law marks the turn­ing point for Hong Kong to move from tur­moil to sta­bil­ity, and the milestone for the prac­tice of “one coun­try, two sys­tems” in Hong Kong.

To­day we gather to mark the an­niver­sary of Hong Kong’s re­turn. We are deeply touched by a great many

Hong Kong com­pa­tri­ots stay­ing com­mit­ted to the original as­pi­ra­tion of “one coun­try, two sys­tems”. The Na­tional Se­cu­rity Law has won the sup­port of all Chi­nese peo­ple, in­clud­ing Hong Kong res­i­dents. Dur­ing the leg­is­la­tion pe­riod, peo­ple from all walks of life demon­strated their col­lec­tive sup­port­for the Na­tional Se­cu­rity Law and “one coun­try, two sys­tems” via the me­dia, street sig­na­ture cam­paign, web posts and na­tional an­them flash mob. This is clear ev­i­dence that the Na­tional Se­cu­rity Law meets the shared as­pi­ra­tions of the peo­ple, and that “one coun­try, two sys­tems” is Hong Kong so­ci­ety’s great­est com­mon de­nom­i­na­tor. Upon the im­ple­men­ta­tion of the Na­tional Se­cu­rity Law, the coun­try will be­come more se­cure, the so­ci­ety more sta­ble and the life of Hong Kong res­i­dents more peace­ful, while this big fam­ily of Hong Kong will surely be able to emerge from the quandary, start anew and em­brace a vic­to­ri­ous fu­ture. Dis­tin­guished guests and friends! No moun­tains could stop the river from flow­ing into the sea. Risks and chal­lenges abound on our way for­ward but the wheels of his­tory will forge ahead. No forces can stop the his­tor­i­cal trend of the great re­ju­ve­na­tion of the Chi­nese na­tion. No dif­fi­cul­ties can stop the ad­vance of the great cause of “one coun­try, two sys­tems”. To­gether let’s ex­tend our best wishes to the moth­er­land! Best wishes to Hong Kong!

Thank you!

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