UN Rights Panel Calls To Repeal Hong Kong Security Law Imposed By China

Tags: International News

Experts from the UN Human Rights Committee said on July 27 that Hong Kong's controversial national security law should be repealed as the law is being used to crack down on free expression and dissent.

Important facts

  • Chinese and Hong Kong officials have used the NSL imposed by Beijing in 2020 to restore stability after the city was destabilized by sometimes violent anti-government and anti-China activities in 2019.

  • This UN committee, which oversees the implementation of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), released its findings on Hong Kong after periodic review.

  • The Hong Kong Special Administrative Region is a signatory to the ICCPR but China is not.

  • This is the first recommendation by an independent UN expert body since 2020.

About Hong Kong

  • Hong Kong is an autonomous region, and a former British colony in southeast China.

  • It became a colony of the British Empire in 1842 at the end of the First Opium War.

  • Sovereignty over the region was returned to China in 1997.

  • As a Special Administrative Region (SAR), Hong Kong maintains governing power and economic systems that are separate from those of mainland China.

  • The Sino-British Joint Declaration of 1984 guarantees basic law for 50 years.

About Hong Kong Security Law

  • Hong Kong was handed back to China by the British government in 1997, but this was done under an agreement.

  • This agreement is called the 'Basic Law' and it affirms the principle of 'one country, two systems'.

  • This minor constitution is a product of the 1984 Sino-British Joint Declaration.

  • Under this, China promised in 1997 that in the coming 50 years it would respect Hong Kong's liberal policies, governance system, an independent judiciary and individual freedoms that no other part of mainland China has.

  • The Basic Law will expire in the year 2047. Under Article 23, Hong Kong can make its own national security law.

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