Foreign Secretary gives update on Hong Kong National Security Legislation and the UK response

Hong Kong skyline
01 July 2020

The Foreign Secretary updated the House on the UK response to the Hong Kong National Security Legislation.

Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab began by updating the House on the latest developments on the situation in Hong Kong, saying; "As I feared when I addressed the House on 2 June, yesterday the standing committee of the National People's Congress in Beijing adopted a wide ranging national security law for Hong Kong."

Speaking about this development, Mr Raab said "this is a grave and deeply disturbing step."

He added:

"Today I have the depressing, but necessary duty to report to the House that the enactment of this legislation imposed by the authorities in Beijing on the people of Hong Kong constitutes a clear and serious breach of the joint declaration."

Mr Raab told the House that the legislation violates the high degree of autonomy, executive and legislative powers and independent judicial authority provided for in paragraph three of the joint declaration

Responding on behalf of the Opposition, Shadow Foreign Secretary, Lisa Nandy responded by expressing shock at the new security law, saying "the arrests overnight have stunned the world. This will have a chilling effect on democracy."

The Shadow Foreign Secretary asked the Foreign Secretary if he can give an update as to when the Home Secretary can provide details of the scheme for British National Overseas (BNO) passport holders and dependents. She also asked if there had been an assessment made over likely take-up.

Ms Nandy added:

"Overnight pepper spray and water canons were used against the pro-democracy protestors. It is now time for Britain to lead an inquiry into police brutality."

The Shadow Foreign Secretary also asked if the Foreign Secretary will now lead the charge for the appointment of a UN special rapporteur on Hong Kong.

Image: David Iliff

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