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US report firmly rejected

The Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Government today said it strongly disapproved of and firmly rejected the unfounded, fact-twisting remarks and smears in the US' so-called 2023 Hong Kong Policy Act Report.   In a statement, the Hong Kong SAR Government strongly disapproved of and firmly rejected the slandering remarks and ill-intentioned attacks in the report against Hong Kong where the “one country, two systems” principle is successfully implemented.   It pointed out that the US once again twisted facts about Hong Kong, with politics overriding the rule of law, and interfered in the city's affairs which are China's internal affairs.   “The US' attempt to undermine the stability and prosperity of Hong Kong will only expose its own weakness and faulty arguments and be doomed to fail.”   It strongly urged the US to immediately stop acting against international law and the basic norms of international relations and interfering in Hong Kong affairs and China's internal affairs at large.   The Hong Kong SAR Government also strongly opposed the false remarks against the improved Hong Kong electoral system and the 2022 Chief Executive Election in the report, highlighting that the electoral system puts in place legal safeguards to ensure full implementation of “patriots administering Hong Kong”.   “Keeping political power in the hands of patriots is a political rule commonly adopted in the world. No one in any country or region in the world will ever allow political power to fall into the hands of forces or individuals who do not love, or even sell out or betray, their own country.”   It emphasised that regardless of one's background, whoever meets the requirements and criteria of a patriot can participate in elections in accordance with the law and serve the Hong Kong public by entering into the city's governance structure after being successfully elected.   The sixth-term Chief Executive Election was successfully held on May 8, 2022, in strict accordance with the electoral laws of Hong Kong in an open, fair and honest manner.   The Hong Kong SAR Government made it clear that the improved electoral system is advanced and superior, adding that its broad representation, political inclusiveness, balanced participation and fair competition help bring society back on track to focus on developing the economy, enhancing people's livelihood, sustaining Hong Kong's long-term stability and prosperity, and achieving good governance.   Hong Kong residents' rights to vote and to stand for election are well enshrined in the Basic Law.   The Decision of the National People's Congress of the People's Republic of China in March 2021 did not revise the ultimate aim of attaining universal suffrage provided for in Basic Law Articles 45 and 68.   The improved electoral system, by ensuring “patriots administering Hong Kong” and safeguarding the overall interests of society, is conducive to the stable development of Hong Kong's democracy, it added.   As regard the absurd and unfounded contents against the National Security Law (NSL) in the report, the Hong Kong SAR Government cited that the US has been repeatedly exploiting different incidents and occasions as well as creating excuses to maliciously slander the NSL and attack Hong Kong in its dutiful, faithful and lawful implementation of the NSL since the law’s implementation in June 2020.   It said the US has also deliberately neglected the fact that the implementation of the NSL has enabled the livelihood and economic activities of the Hong Kong community at large to resume as normal and the business environment to be restored.   “Its bullying act and hypocrisy with double standards are despicable.”   The Hong Kong SAR also noted that the legislative interpretation of the NSL given by the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress last year did not in any way impair the independent judicial power and the power of final adjudication of the Hong Kong courts as guaranteed by the Basic Law.   “The interpretation did not confer additional power on the Chief Executive, and only clarified that Article 47 of the NSL is applicable in handling the controversy concerning overseas lawyers.   “Owing to the inherent nature of matters concerning national security, the executive authority is in a far better position than the courts to make appropriate judgements.   “Hence, the courts will afford deference to the judgements made by the executive authority regarding national security matters.   “This principle is also a general rule for safeguarding national security practised by different places in the world, including in the US.   “It must be stressed that the certificate issued by the Chief Executive only provides binding certification to the court on the questions stipulated in Article 47 of the NSL.   “It does not usurp the function of the court in deciding on other issues of the legal proceedings or the adjudication of the case.”   The Hong Kong SAR Government also rebuked the US report's groundless smears against its law enforcement actions.   “We seriously reiterate that all law enforcement actions taken by Hong Kong law enforcement agencies under the NSL, or indeed any local laws, are based on evidence, strictly according to the law and for the acts of the persons or entities concerned, and have nothing to do with their political stance, background or occupation.”   As regard the “sanctions” arbitrarily imposed by the US as mentioned in the report, the Hong Kong SAR Government seriously reiterated the “sanctions” smack of despicable political manipulation, grossly interfere in China's internal affairs and Hong Kong affairs, and violate international law and the basic norms governing international relations.   “The Hong Kong SAR Government despises such so-called ‘sanctions’ by the US, is not intimidated by such despicable behaviour, and will resolutely continue to discharge the duty of safeguarding national security."   It supplemented that the legal basis for implementing “one country, two systems” comprises the Constitution and the Basic Law, which provide a constitutional guarantee for fundamental rights and freedoms, including the right to equality before the law, and is buttressed by the rule of law and independent judicial power.   “The Hong Kong SAR Government will continue to fully, faithfully and resolutely implement the principles of 'one country, two systems', 'Hong Kong people administering Hong Kong' and a high degree of autonomy in accordance with the Constitution and the Basic Law to ensure the long-term stability and prosperity of Hong Kong," it added.
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