Hong Kong: Politics and Government

Foreign and Commonwealth Office written question – answered on 17th June 2019.

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Photo of Paul Girvan Paul Girvan Shadow DUP Spokesperson (Education), Liberal Democrat Lords Spokesperson (Transport), Shadow DUP Spokesperson (Transport)

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what recent representations he has made to the Government of People's Republic of China on the suppression of political activists in Hong Kong.

Photo of Mark Field Mark Field Minister of State

We speak to the Chinese Government at all levels on a range of issues concerning Hong Kong. The British Consul General to Hong Kong discussed political developments in Hong Kong with the Director of the Hong Kong and Macao Affairs Office and the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Beijing in April 2019. We also raise Hong Kong in the course of regular dialogue with China's Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

We have raised a number of issues relating to the proposals with the Hong Kong Government at senior levels and Chinese officials in Beijing. These include potential implications for our bilateral extradition treaty, as well as the potential consequences for the UK business community and for UK citizens living in or travelling through Hong Kong. We will continue to seek clarity from the authorities on these points.

The Foreign Secretary and Canadian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Chrystia Freeland, issued a Joint Statement on 30 May 2019,which noted concern for the potential effect of the proposals on the large number of UK and Canadian citizens in Hong Kong, on business confidence and on Hong Kong's international reputation. They made clear that any extradition arrangements in Hong Kong should be in line with 'One Country, Two Systems' and fully respect Hong Kong's high degree of autonomy. They also urged the Hong Kong Government to engage meaningfully with Hong Kong's broad range of local and international stakeholders in order to ensure their concerns are fully considered.

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