Commissioner's office of Chinese foreign ministry says improving HKSAR's electoral system imperative

The Office of the Commissioner of the Chinese Foreign Ministry said improving the electoral system of the HKSAR is necessary for adhering to the "one country, two systems."

The Office of the Commissioner of the Chinese Foreign Ministry in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region said Friday that improving the electoral system of the HKSAR is necessary for adhering to and improving the institutional framework of "one country, two systems" and for fully reflecting and implementing the principle of "patriots administering Hong Kong."

The statement came as Wang Chen, vice chairman of Standing Committee of the National People's Congress , delivered an explanatory speech about a draft decision on improving the electoral system of the HKSAR at the opening meeting of the fourth annual session of the 13th NPC on Friday.

A spokesperson for the commissioner's office said improving the HKSAR's electoral system is also necessary for safeguarding national sovereignty, security and development interests and Hong Kong's long-term prosperity and stability. It has a solid political and legal foundation and will serve as a strong guarantee of the enduring success of "one country, two systems."

The spokesperson said according to the Constitution of China, the power to establish special administrative regions and prescribe the systems instituted there lies with the state. As a significant part of Hong Kong's political system and structure, the electoral system falls within the purview of the central authorities.

It is in line with the Constitution and the HKSAR Basic Law and with indisputable authority that the NPC and its Standing Committee take a "decision plus amendment" approach to improve the electoral system of the HKSAR at the constitutional level so as to provide sound institutional safeguards for "patriots administering Hong Kong," said the spokesperson.

The spokesperson said over the nearly 24 years since Hong Kong's return to the motherland, the central authorities have stayed committed to the principles of "one country, two systems" and "Hong Kong people administering Hong Kong" with a high degree of autonomy, and acted in strict accordance with the Constitution and the HKSAR Basic Law.

As a result, the practice of "one country, two systems" has been a universally recognized success, Hong Kong's political democracy has been gradually advanced, and Hong Kong people enjoy unprecedented rights under the law, the spokesperson said.

But in recent years, especially since social unrest in 2019, anti-China disruptors in Hong Kong have colluded with external hostile forces, openly advocated "Hong Kong independence", and sowed trouble in the HKSAR and China at large by exploiting elections in the HKSAR, the fora of the Legislative Council (LegCo) and district councils, or their status as public officers, the spokesperson said.

Their aim is to paralyze the LegCo, obstruct the HKSAR government's law-based governance, challenge the authority of the central government and seize jurisdiction over the HKSAR. Such chaos proves that there are obvious loopholes and deficiencies in the existing electoral system of the HKSAR, of which the destabilizing forces have been taking advantage. Therefore, it is imperative to close the loopholes and build up stronger lines of defense, the spokesperson said.

The spokesperson emphasized that Hong Kong is part of China, and that its electoral system is part of China's local electoral systems. It is solely China's internal affair as to how to design, develop and improve the system, and no foreign country shall interfere.

"We hope the international community will stand by international law and basic norms governing international relations, fully and accurately understand and respect "one country, two systems", earnestly support Hong Kong's prosperity and stability, and avoid meddling with Hong Kong affairs and China's internal affairs as a whole in any way.

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