Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam on Tuesday called on the opposition camp not to “demonise” the new national security law being tailor-made for the city by China, as she promised her government would explain the details of the legislation after it was drafted.
Lam said stigmatising the law would bring the opposition into conflict with the Hong Kong public, but stopped short of commenting further on the bill, saying she was not involved in its drafting, reports the South China Morning Post (SCMP) newspaper.
The law Beijing is imposing on Hong Kong aims to prevent, stop and punish secession, subversion of state power, terrorism and foreign interference in the city.
“Without any details about the provisions in the legislation, and how they are going to be applied, it is not possible and appropriate for me to express my opinion on comments made by my mainland counterparts, because I’m not a party to the lawmaking institution,” Lam said ahead of her weekly Executive Council meeting on Tuesday.
“Hong Kong authorities will implement the law in the end, and will use the legal system that people are familiar with.
“The procedures of the implementation and the source of power will be written clearly,” she said, adding her administration would further explain its details once it was drafted.
Lam also took aim at the critics of the bill, insisting it would be “constitutionally and legally in order” and should not be challenged by foreign governments.
She added the law would only target a handful of people who attempted to undermine national security and that it was enacted to protect “the vast majority of Hong Kong people and their legitimate rights and interests”, the SCMP newspaper reported.
“This new piece of legislation will not change Hong Kong’s high degree of autonomy, and will not affect judicial independence, including that of final adjudication,” she said.