Hong Kong - Its past, the current and future - where is it heading?

As this ruckus over extradition stems from China's clear breach of the agreement by the UK and China on the terms and outcomes which was duly registered with the UN, why is the UK not taking it up with the UN? The threat of a protracted hearing at the Hague might make them think twice about abrogating the 'one country, two systems' agreement so blatantly.
 
As this ruckus over extradition stems from China's clear breach of the agreement by the UK and China on the terms and outcomes which was duly registered with the UN, why is the UK not taking it up with the UN? The threat of a protracted hearing at the Hague might make them think twice about abrogating the 'one country, two systems' agreement so blatantly.
You would think that the British government cannot attend to more than one thing at a time. I have no doubt that briefings will be sought, position papers drafted (and re-drafted) and steps will be taken 'in the fullness of time' (Minister).
 
As this ruckus over extradition stems from China's clear breach of the agreement by the UK and China on the terms and outcomes which was duly registered with the UN, why is the UK not taking it up with the UN? The threat of a protracted hearing at the Hague might make them think twice about abrogating the 'one country, two systems' agreement so blatantly.
Why? The UK needs China now more than ever - after the Brexit - you don't really want to piss off future trade partners, even if it's against your values. Simple.
 
You would think that the British government cannot attend to more than one thing at a time. I have no doubt that briefings will be sought, position papers drafted (and re-drafted) and steps will be taken 'in the fullness of time' (Minister).
Yep, strongly worded letter to follow, as long as it doesn't jeopardise trade.
 
As this ruckus over extradition stems from China's clear breach of the agreement by the UK and China on the terms and outcomes which was duly registered with the UN
Sadly, we agreed to Basic Law leaving both the execution and interpretation of national security to Beijing.

Threaten the territorial integrity of the PRC and you're in their bailiwick.
 

Goatman

ADC
Book Reviewer
As this ruckus over extradition stems from China's clear breach of the agreement by the UK and China on the terms and outcomes which was duly registered with the UN, why is the UK not taking it up with the UN? The threat of a protracted hearing at the Hague might make them think twice about abrogating the 'one country, two systems' agreement so blatantly.
This is the English text of a letter to the China-installed CEO of Hong Kong, Dr Vidkun Quisling...er Carrie Lam

Original is here
LINK


6 June, 2019 Carrie Lam
Chief Executive
Office of the Chief Executive
Tamar
Hong Kong
ceo@ceo.gov.hk
Dear Chief Executive,

OPEN LETTER REGARDING PROPOSED CHANGES TO HONG KONG’S EXTRADITION LAW

We are writing to express our grave concern regarding the Hong Kong government’s proposed amendments to two Hong Kong laws concerning extradition, the Fugitive Offenders’ Ordinance (FOO) and the Mutual Legal Assistance in Criminal Matters Ordinance (MLACMO).

The existing legislation expressly excludes Mainland China from extradition and mutual legal assistance arrangements, a deliberate decision reflecting public and lawmakers’ concerns about China’s poor human rights record. However, the proposed changes to expand the extradition arrangement to Mainland China would have the effect of enabling the handover of persons in the territory of Hong Kong, be they residents of Hong Kong, persons travelling to or working in Hong Kong, or persons merely in transit, as well as materials carried by them or in their possession.

We are especially concerned that in the proposed amendments, anyone who is accused of “aiding, abetting, counselling or procuring the commission of, inciting, being an accessory before or after the fact to, or attempting to commit an offence” that are within the offences described in the FOO, will also fall on the extraditable offences.

Given the Chinese judiciary’s lack of independence, and other procedural shortcomings that often result in unfair trials, we are worried that the proposed changes will put at risk anyone in the territory of Hong Kong who has carried out work related to the Mainland, including human rights defenders, journalists, NGO workers and social workers, even if the person was outside the Mainland when the ostensible crime was committed.

We are calling on the Hong Kong government to immediately withdraw the bill to amend the FOO and the MLACMO. The government also proposed to amend the MLACMO, which allows Hong Kong police to search individuals or enter private premises for evidence and confiscate or freeze properties in Hong Kong upon China’s request for assistance. The court would order the extradition of the suspect once the evidence adduced by the government reaches prima facie level. The suspect cannot adduce evidence and raise a defence and there is no cross-examination on the evidence.

Serious shortcomings in the proposed amendment The Hong Kong Security Bureau contends that the amendments contain adequate safeguards for human rights and any Hong Kong court would consider the human rights situation of the countries that make the request for surrender of fugitives or material. However, in practice, the safeguards are unlikely to provide genuine and effective protection:

1. Under the Immigration Ordinance, “torture claims” to ward off forced removals cannot be made against China 2. The court does not have the clear explicit jurisdiction and legal obligation to examine the various human rights involved in Mainland China or in other countries
3. Surrender of fugitives or materials under the proposed arrangement does not guarantee comparable minimum rights enjoyed by persons in Hong Kong’s criminal justice system
4. The courts’ review function is limited to ensure the Hong Kong government has complied with the formal requirements set out in the FOO
5. Removal of legislative scrutiny for the arrest and surrender of persons requested by a country with which Hong Kong does not have a treaty-based arrangement

The International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, which applies to Hong Kong, and the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment, to which Hong Kong is bound, as well as customary international law, prohibit the return of individuals to jurisdictions where there is a real risk of torture or other ill-treatment, including detention in poor conditions for indefinite periods, or other serious human rights violations.

We also note the obligation to mandatorily and generally refuse extradition requests where the person sought may face the death penalty, as reflected in present Hong Kong law and practice, and that any assurances as to its non-application would have to be reliable, effective and open to judicial scrutiny in Hong Kong. China’s justice system has a record of arbitrary detention, torture and other ill-treatment, serious violations of fair trial rights, enforced disappearances and various systems of incommunicado detention without trial. These problems are exacerbated because the Mainland judiciary lacks independence from the government and the Chinese Communist Party. As a result, we are gravely concerned that anyone extradited to China will be at risk of torture and other ill-treatment and other grave human rights violations. We are calling on the Hong Kong government to immediately halt its plan to amend the legislation.

We look forward to your reply and would appreciate receiving your response on this matter.

Sincerely, Man-kei Tam Director Amnesty International Hong Kong
Law Yuk Kai Director Hong Kong Human Rights Monitor
Sophie Richardson China Director Human Rights Watch

------------------ ----------------- ----------------------------- -------------------
 

riksavage

Old-Salt
China will only sit back for so long. If the protesters kick off again, the PRC politburo will eventually order a crack down and if the HKP don’t achieve the desired result then the PLA garrison will step up. People need to understand the communist party doesn’t give a damn about world opinion when it comes to Chinese nationalism and history. HK, like Taiwan, is part of greater China, end of. This is and will never be up for debate.

A surprising number of mainland Chinese don’t like Hong Kongers, they see them as naughty children who need a slap. And the slap will come regardless of the economic fallout.

Having lived in HK and Shanghai, pre and post 1997, I’ve seen first hand how the PRC has changed, they know this century belongs to them and short of WW3 nothing is going to stop them achieving their destiny. The Middle Kingdom will once again sit at the centre of the world, so get your green Jim-jams ironed and start learning to read barb wire.

Once Taiwan’s back in the fold (through soft or hard option), the next to ‘get it’ will be Japan. The Chinese have very looooooong memories.

Note, the protesters have pointed out a few ‘running dogs’ to point the finger at
 

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Goatman

ADC
Book Reviewer
Once Taiwan’s back in the fold (through soft or hard option), the next to ‘get it’ will be Japan. The Chinese have very looooooong memories.

Note, the protesters have pointed out a few ‘running dogs’ to point the finger at
Seem to recall somebody tried that back in the long ago....didn't work then, doubt we will see Chinese Army boots ( $9 a pair, Free On Board) on Honshu in my lifetime.


1560948405723.png
 

gaijin

War Hero
I absolutely disagree that the PLA will take to the streets here (not unless dressed in HKP uniforms which may, or may, not have already happened). It would run a, very real, risk of businesses moving out at a rate of knots. Many of them are here because of the, UK based, rule of law that they know that they can rely on. Take that away and you take HK's competitive advantage away.

What Beijing is trying to do with its Greater Bay Area strategy is open more of China up to being like Hong Kong rather than bringing HK into China. This is shrewd business sense as it will (should) bring significant investment into the mainland IF it can be proven that this is the case. I was told, over 2 years ago by someone very very well connected in China, that this was always the plan.

Which does make it all the more strange that the extradition bill has been pushed so hard. I would not, though, be surprised if Beijing has ordered Carrie Lam to make it less of a priority going forward so as not to scare business away.
 

riksavage

Old-Salt
I absolutely disagree that the PLA will take to the streets here (not unless dressed in HKP uniforms which may, or may, not have already happened). It would run a, very real, risk of businesses moving out at a rate of knots. Many of them are here because of the, UK based, rule of law that they know that they can rely on. Take that away and you take HK's competitive advantage away.

What Beijing is trying to do with its Greater Bay Area strategy is open more of China up to being like Hong Kong rather than bringing HK into China. This is shrewd business sense as it will (should) bring significant investment into the mainland IF it can be proven that this is the case. I was told, over 2 years ago by someone very very well connected in China, that this was always the plan.

Which does make it all the more strange that the extradition bill has been pushed so hard. I would not, though, be surprised if Beijing has ordered Carrie Lam to make it less of a priority going forward so as not to scare business away.
That was always the plan, turn HK, Shenzhen and Guangzhou into one giant economic powerhouse. Unfortunately nationalism and politics trumps economics in today’s China. The PRC politburo will not tolerate dissent, they’re paranoid it will spread. There’s no way in a million years the Chinese authorities will allow protest to succeed as a means of changing state policy. If the protests continue, China will react and do what ever it takes to suppress it, don’t underestimate their capacity to take a knock economically to achieve their longer term goals. With the rise of the wealthy classes in China, nationalism is steadily replacing communism as the driving force. They no longer need or seek the approval of the West, their economic colonialism is changing the balance of power in their favour. I’ve seen first hand what they’re building in Pakistan and West Africa, it’s breathtaking to be honest. It’s like the British Empire on steroids.
 
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This whole thread just reminded me of Kai Tak and the insane approaches there - I was on my way to OZ at the time, and was connecting a flight in HK - my first time ever - and it scared the bejesus out of me! I was only 14 at the time, just before it closed. F-ing hell, I thought I was going to hit all the damn buildings!


Kai Tak
 

riksavage

Old-Salt
Adding to the above, the pace of change in China is breathtaking. I lived in Nanjing in the 90’s; a sleepy city, few high rise buildings and a basic railway station. I returned last year. The city centre looks like the city of London. Shops to rival the west end. RR’s, Lambo’s, Aston Martins were ten a penny. A new railway station that looked like Terminal Five, checking in travelers through a similar screening process to an international airport. High speed trains on every track that look better than Japan’s. I traveled by train from Nanjing to Beijing at what felt like warp speed in complete silence, carriages set up like a business class cabin. The pace of change is incomprehensible.

The last time I was in Pakistan I visited a Chinese run construction project. The Paki Army battalion assigned to protect the site had a cadre of officers that all spoke Mandarin. English was no longer seen as the desired first choice as a second language.
 
Adding to the above, the pace of change in China is breathtaking. I lived in Nanjing in the 90’s; a sleepy city, few high rise buildings and a basic railway station. I returned last year. The city centre looks like the city of London. Shops to rival the west end. RR’s, Lambo’s, Aston Martins were ten a penny. A new railway station that looked like Terminal Five, checking in travelers through a similar screening process to an international airport. High speed trains on every track that look better than Japan’s. I traveled by train from Nanjing to Beijing at what felt like warp speed in complete silence, carriages set up like a business class cabin. The pace of change is incomprehensible.

The last time I was in Pakistan I visited a Chinese run construction project. The Paki Army battalion assigned to protect the site had a cadre of officers that all spoke Mandarin. English was no longer seen as the desired first choice as a second language.
That's not all Pakistan is doing for China:

Pakistani officials claim women trafficked into prostitution in China after marriage

The one child policy and selective abortions (ie, of girls) was always going to lead to problems. I believe that there is a similar situation with young women being trafficked from Myanmar to China, but with less interest from the Myanmar authorities.
 

Goatman

ADC
Book Reviewer
Another take:

Source

When Presidents Xi Jinping and Donald Trump meet on the margins of the G-20 summit in Osaka later this week to seek a trade deal, Xi is likely to soften the customary formality of Chinese diplomacy by calling the U.S. president “my friend.” Beneath the cordial surface, however, Xi will yield nothing. Trump must then decide whether to accept the Chinese offer that has been on the table ever since early 2017 and end the trade war or to allow the U.S. and Chinese economies to drift further toward decoupling.

“We’re going to win either way,” Trump likes to say. But according to two Chinese colleagues who contributed to this article but cannot attach their names, Beijing policymakers believe he is either misinformed or bluffing.

CHINA'S BOTTOM LINE
The basic Chinese position on the trade war has not changed since 2017. Under its proposal, China would buy more U.S. products in an effort to narrow the trade deficit, and it would reaffirm its long-standing commitment to the legal protection of intellectual property rights. But if foreign firms voluntarily decide to share trade secrets with Chinese firms in order to gain access to the Chinese market—a practice the United States characterizes as “coercive transfer”—China would do nothing to interfere. China would continue on its established trajectory of opening its market to foreign banks and businesses, but it would not accelerate the pace of opening. Its currency would remain pegged to a basket of foreign currencies, and Beijing would not artificially deflate it, since China sees no benefit to a currency war. The Chinese government has already lowered the volume of propaganda about its Made in China 2025 program, which pushes for Chinese dominance of modern technologies such as robotics and artificial intelligence. But it is not willing to ramp down the research and development projects that form the substance of that program. In short, China has offered to change nothing structural in its development model, but it is willing to grant Trump a nominal victory he could use in the 2020 presidential campaign.


--
The article continues:

China has many ways besides tariffs to inflict pain on the U.S. economy. These include tightening audit requirements for U.S. companies in China, toughening up quarantine and safety inspections for U.S. imports, and intensifying the regulation of U.S. financial institutions operating in China. China has already limited the export of rare earth minerals, essential in the production of high-tech electronics, to the United States. And it has drawn up a preliminary list of large U.S. companies to be deemed “nonreliable,” although what sanctions those on the list will face is not yet clear. At the same time, China has made life easier for British, French, German, and Japanese companies. The People’s Bank of China has steadily reduced its holdings of U.S. Treasury bonds, thus gradually constraining Washington’s ability to finance its deficit at low interest rates. Even North Korea has come into the picture: Xi’s visit to Pyongyang last week was timed to remind the U.S. side that China can help or hurt the United States not only economically but strategically as well.
 
Well....it's kind of inevitable isn't it? Let's just all admit - when the UK gave it over - HK will be "Chinesed," gradually be part of mainland...they have begun the process a long time ago and it will only accelerate...yes HKs might protest and temporarily slow down things but the Chinese have always played the long game and as memories fade and current people die...it will slowly become one.

I bet Taiwan is shitting itself. Not if they haven't already.
 

riksavage

Old-Salt
Taiwan is well worth a visit, more like Japan than China (clean, polite and less shouty). The younger generation don’t see themselves as being mainland Chinese, they’re too wrapped up in K-Pop and Hello Kitty to bother about the motherland and patriotic one-China narrative.

Their attitude is like that of the South Koreans. They know a war with their unpredictable neighbours will be very bloody, but they don’t appear to let it get to them. They just crack on and live their daily lives. The standard of living in both countries is pretty high, the beers cold, the girls are up for it and the foods great.
 

Mike Barton

War Hero
I love Hong Kong and would be delighted to see it stay as it is, but really, where do they think this is going? Sure they might delay the extradition bill this time with their Les Mis songs and umbrellas, but come on, the future is writ large, a snail may as well protest against the wheels of an oncoming juggernaut as Hong Kongers protest against their inevitable fate.

They simply must grin and bear it, the Royal Yacht Britannia isn't going to sail back over the horizon (not that any protestor thinks it will, I am being metaphorical) there is only one direction in which Hong Kong is travelling and the sooner they adjust their mindsets to that reality the better it will be for them.

Sad but true.
 

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