- We are deeply concerned at proposals for introducing legislation related to national security in Hong Kong and we are following the development closely.
- With hundreds of thousands of Canadians living in Hong Kong, we have a vested interest in its stability and prosperity — the foundation of which are Hong Kong’s relative autonomy and basic freedoms.
- Canada continues to support Hong Kong’s high degree of autonomy and freedoms under the Basic Law and the “One Country, Two Systems” framework.
- We continue to encourage all parties to engage in peaceful and meaningful dialogue to address the legitimate concerns expressed by the Hong Kong population.
- Canada will always support and promote freedom of speech, freedom of expression & freedom of the press around the world
Joint Statement on Hong Kong – Canada, US, UK, and Australia
May 28, 2020 – Ottawa, Ontario – Global Affairs Canada
“Signatories to this statement reiterate our deep concern regarding Beijing’s decision to impose a national security law in Hong Kong.
“Hong Kong has flourished as a bastion of freedom. The international community has a significant and longstanding stake in Hong Kong’s prosperity and stability. Direct imposition of national security legislation on Hong Kong by the Beijing authorities, rather than through Hong Kong’s own institutions as provided for under Article 23 of the Basic Law, would curtail the Hong Kong people’s liberties, and in doing so, dramatically erode the autonomy and the system that made it so prosperous.
“China’s proposals for a new national security law for Hong Kong lies in direct conflict with its international obligations under the principles of the legally-binding, UN-registered Sino-British Joint Declaration. The proposed law would undermine the One Country, Two Systems framework. It also raises the prospect of prosecution in Hong Kong for political crimes, and undermines existing commitments to protect the rights of Hong Kong people – including those set out in the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights.
“We are also extremely concerned that this action will exacerbate the existing deep divisions in Hong Kong society; the law does nothing to build mutual understanding and foster reconciliation within Hong Kong. Rebuilding trust across Hong Kong society by allowing the people of Hong Kong to enjoy the rights and freedoms they were promised can be the only way back from the tensions and unrest that the territory has seen over the last year.
“The world’s focus on a global pandemic requires enhanced trust in governments and international cooperation. Beijing’s unprecedented move risks having the opposite effect.
“As Hong Kong’s stability and prosperity are jeopardized by the new imposition, we call on the Government of China to work with the Hong Kong SAR Government and the people of Hong Kong to find a mutually acceptable accommodation that will honor China’s international obligations under the UN-filed Sino-British Joint Declaration.”