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  • Chinese Premier Li Keqiang is shown live on an outdoor electronic display at a street in Hong Kong, China, May 28, 2020.

    Chinese Premier Li Keqiang is shown live on an outdoor electronic display at a street in Hong Kong, China, May 28, 2020. | Photo: EFE

Published 28 May 2020
Opinion

The proposal seeks to sanction secessionist and subversive activities, as well as foreign interference and terrorism.

Despite U.S. threats and international criticism, China's National People's Congress approved Thursday a proposed new national security law for the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region.

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The legislation, which aims to prevent, deter and punish acts in Hong Kong that threaten the country's security, was approved by 2,878 votes to 1, with 6 abstentions.

The proposal seeks to sanction secessionist and subversive activities, as well as foreign interference and terrorism.

The law process of promulgation could take some months to be completed.

The government bill announced in 2019 generated protests in the Chinese Special Administrative Region and international criticism.

China was accused of removing promised legal protections for the Hong Kong people when Beijing regained control of the former British colony in 1997.

China maintains the principle of 'one country, two systems', with the idea of the coexistence of capitalism and socialism in some regions of the country.

On the eve of the vote, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo notified Congress that the Trump Administration no longer considers Hong Kong to be autonomous from mainland China.

This step could have far-reaching consequences for the special trade status that the former British colony has in relation to Washington.

U.S. President Donald Trump told reporters at the White House on Tuesday that his government is preparing measures against China for its attempt to impose national security laws on Hong Kong. 

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