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Monday, April 16, 2018, 10:27
Wang: National security in HK's interests
By Willa Wu in Hong Kong
Monday, April 16, 2018, 10:27 By Willa Wu in Hong Kong

Wang Zhimin (third right), director of the Liaison Office of the Central People's Government in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, Tung Chee-hwa (center), vice-chairman of the National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference, People's Republic of China, and Chief Executive Carrie Lam (third left) pose for a group photo at the National Security Education Day Symposium at the Conrad Hotel on April 15, 2018. (EDMONG TANG / CHINA DAILY)

Safeguarding national security will guarantee that “one country, two systems” can be upheld, ensure long-term, stable practice of the principle, and firmly secure the fundamental interests of Hong Kong people, says the nation’s top liaison official in the city.

Wang Zhimin, urged Hong Kong people, regardless of their political background, to unite and work together to press ahead in safeguarding national security

Wang Zhimin, director of the Liaison Office of the Central People’s Government in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, stressed that safeguarding national security is the shared responsibility of Hong Kong people although they live under a social and economic system different from that of the mainland. 

He made the remarks on Sunday at Hong Kong’s first National Security Education Day symposium, organized by two Hong Kong-based think tanks -- the Hong Kong Policy Research Institute and Hong Kong Vision -- and attended by Chief Executive Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor, as well as senior local and mainland officials and political heavyweights. 

Wang urged Hong Kong people, regardless of their political background, to unite and work together to press ahead in safeguarding national security as the city is still short of an indepth and sound policy for such a course. 

Hong Kong’s lack of a policy to protect national security, he said, has turned the city into a loophole of the country’s overall interests, leaving a direct impact on its people. 

Under Article 23 of the city’s constitutional document -- the Basic Law -- Hong Kong must enact its own national security legislation to bar any attempt at treason and subversion. Legislation work on the issue has been at a standstill since 2003. 

Without enacting a national security law, certain local radicals have been “unscrupulously” advocating “Hong Kong independence” not only in public, but also in schools and universities, intoxicating the region’s next generation, Wang said.

He noted that some people have even gone to Taiwan and abroad, ganging with anti-China forces to carry out activities aimed at separating Hong Kong from the motherland and subverting the country’s regime.

Such conduct goes far beyond academic freedom and freedom of speech -- two terms Hong Kong activists have often used to sugarcoat their behavior. This poses a real threat to the rejuvenation of the Chinese nation, as well as Hong Kong’s long-term stability and prosperity, Wang warned.  

As the symposium is the first of its kind held in Hong Kong, Wang hoped that it can be staged annually to allow more Hong Kong people to comprehend that upholding national security is a responsibility to shoulder. 

National Security Education Day has been held on April 15 each year since 2016 to promote public awareness of national security. The day was designated by the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress -- the country’s top legislature -- after it passed the National Security Law on July 1, 2015.

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