Topics Covered: India and its neighbourhood- relations.
China seeks India’s support for its new law
What to study?
For prelims: Geographical and political position of Hong Kong.
For mains: Controversy over the new bill, concerns expressed, key features of the bill and what needs to be done?
Context: China has sought the support and understanding of India and other countries for its controversial decision to impose a new national security law on Hong Kong.
China said the new legislation is aimed at containing the “secessionist” forces in the former British colony who have posed a “grave threat” to the country’s national security and sovereignty.
China has also sent demarches to India and several other countries explaining the reason for the new draft legislation with a reminder that upholding national security” in Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) is “purely China’s internal affair and no foreign country may interfere in this matter”.
How is Hong Kong currently administered?
Hong Kong is a Special Administrative Region (SAR) of China. It has observed a “one country, two systems” policy since Britain returned sovereignty to China on July 1, 1997, which has allowed it certain freedoms the rest of China does not have.
What’s this One Country Two Systems approach?
As per the policy, the Hong Kong and Macau Special Administrative Regions, both former colonies, can have different economic and political systems from that of mainland China, while being part of the People’s Republic of China. It was proposed by Deng Xiaoping with an aim to unify China and Taiwan.
- On December 19, 1984, China and the U.K. signed the Sino-British Joint Declaration in Beijing, which set the terms for the autonomy and the legal, economic and governmental systems for Hong Kong post 1997.
- Similarly, on March 26, 1987, China and Portugal signed the Joint Declaration on the Question of Macau in which China made similar promises for the region of Macau after it was handed over to Beijing.
What’s happening now in Hong Kong?
Relentless agitation is carried out by the local Hong Kong people demanding political and administrative autonomy agreed by China when it took possession of the former British colony in 1997.
While the seven-month-long agitation last year in which millions took part subsided during the coronavirus (COVID-19) crisis from January to April, protesters returned to streets this month, with the pro-autonomy and pro-freedom legislators grappling with the security officials in local legislature protesting against the curbs.
- Regions under the administrative control of China.
- Their geographical locations.
- Who pioneered one country two systems approach.
- Countries involved in South China Sea dispute.
Sources: the Hindu.