Hong Kong News

Nonpartisan, Noncommercial, unconstrained.
Thursday, Feb 09, 2023

NPC move 'does not override judicial independence'

NPC move 'does not override judicial independence'

Beijing's interpretation of the national security law simply spelled out the issues and did not aim to expand the power of the Committee for Safeguarding National Security of the SAR, says Maria Tam Wai-chu, the deputy director of the Basic Law Committee.
The National People's Congress standing committee declared in its elaboration on Friday that the oversight body had the power to make "judgments and decisions" on questions related to national security under article 14, and they were "enforceable in law."

Article 47 states that Hong Kong courts should obtain a certificate from the SAR chief executive, binding on all courts, to certify the question of whether an act involves national security.

Tam said Beijing's interpretation of articles 14 and 47 "spelled things out" clearly, saying the two articles are like gears working together.

She disagreed with the view that the interpretation overrode judicial independence as it falls on the executive arm of government to be responsible for deciding national security-related policies.

"[We are] not discussing whether a particular lawyer can be involved in a particular case, but we are looking from the policy perspective and the principle," Tam said.

If the SAR chief executive and the committee regarded an issue to be a policy problem, she said, then foreign lawyers would not be allowed to handle national security cases.

"Judicial independence has never been supported by foreign lawyers," she said, "and I believe 95 percent of cases did not involve the hiring of foreign lawyers. Does that mean all these cases suffered injustice?"

As for the requirement for courts to "respect and implement" the national security committee's decisions, the judiciary said Friday it respects the "lawful exercise of power" by the NPC standing committee and will continue to perform its functions according to the Basic Law.

Basic Law Committee member Albert Chen Hung-yee said the NPC interpretation did not contradict the court of final appeal ruling to allow king's counsel Tim Owen to defend media mogul Jimmy Lai Chee-ying in a collusion trial to be held in September.

He said the interpretation only explained the power of the committee and did not rule on whether overseas lawyers can participate in national security trials.

Executive Council member Ronny Tong Ka-wah said the move gave space for the committee to review if overseas lawyers can participate in security trials.

"The interpretation is closer to the one country, two systems principle as the committee has a better understanding of Hong Kong's actual situation," he said.

Tong added the solution given by Beijing has greater flexibility rather than barring completely overseas lawyers from appearing in national security trials.
Newsletter

Related Articles

Hong Kong News
Close
0:00
0:00
Today's news from Britain - 9th February 2023
China has declined the US's request for Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin to speak with Chinese Defense Minister Wei Fenghe after the US Air Force shot down a suspected Chinese spy balloon, according to the Pentagon
The five largest oil companies in the West generated combined profits of nearly $200 billion in 2022, which has led to increased calls for governments to impose tougher windfall taxes
2 earthquakes in Turkey killed over 2,300 people
Powerful Earthquake Strikes Turkey and Syria, Killing More Than 1,300 People.
Turkish photographer Ugur Gallenkus portrays two different worlds within a single image. Brilliant work
Charlie Munger, calls for a ban on cryptocurrencies in the US, following China's lead
Hong Kong airlines taking bold action after the years of pandemic lockdown and travel restrictions, to make Hong Kong great again
EU found a way to use frozen Russian funds
First generation unopened iPhone set to fetch more than $50,000 at auction.
WARNING GRAPHIC CONTENT - US Memphis Police murdering innocent Tyre Nichols
Almost 30% of professionals say they've tried ChatGPT at work
Interpol seeks woman who ran elaborate exam cheating scam in Singapore
Chinese search giant Baidu to launch ChatGPT like AI chatbot.
What is ChatGPT?
Bill Gates is ‘very optimistic’ about the future: ‘Better to be born 20 years from now...than any time in the past’
China is opening up for foreign investors.
Tesla reported record profits and record revenues for 2022
Prince Andrew and Virginia Giuffre Photo Is Fake: Ghislaine Maxwell
Moonwalker Buzz Aldrin Gets Married On His 93rd Birthday
Federal Reserve Probes Goldman’s Consumer Business
China's first population drop in six decades
Microsoft is finalising plans to become the latest technology giant to reduce its workforce during a global economic slowdown
China's foreign ministry branch in Hong Kong urges British gov't to stop the biased and double standards Hong Kong report
China relaxes 'red lines' on property sector borrowing in policy pivot
Tesla slashes prices globally by as much as 20 percent
Japan prosecutors indict man for ex-PM Shinzo Abe murder
Vietnam removes two deputy PMs amid anti-corruption campaign
1.4 Million Copies Of Prince Harry's Memoir 'Spare' Sold On 1st Day In UK
After Failing To Pay Office Rent, Twitter May Sell User Names
FIFA president questioned by prosecutors
Britain's Sunak breaks silence and admits using private healthcare
Hype and backlash as Harry's memoir goes on sale. Unnamed royal source says prince 'kidnapped by cult of psychotherapy and Meghan'
China’s recovery could add 1% to Australia’s GDP: JPMorgan 
Saudi Arabia set to overtake India as fastest-growing major economy this year 
China vows to strengthen financial support for enterprises: official
International medical experts speak out against COVID-19 restrictions on China
2 Billion People To Travel In China's "Great Migration" Over Next 40 Days
Google and Facebook’s dominance in digital ads challenged by rapid ascent of Amazon and TikTok
Flight constraints expected to weigh on China travel rebound
Billionaire Jack Ma relinquishes control of Ant Group
FTX fraud investigators are digging deeper into Sam Bankman-Fried's inner circle – and reportedly have ex-engineer Nishad Singh in their sights
Teslas now over 40% cheaper in China than US
TikTok CEO Plans to Meet European Union Regulators
UK chaos: Hong Kong emigrants duped by false prospectus
China seeks course correction in US ties but will fight ‘all forms of hegemony’, top diplomat Wang Yi says
China will boost spending in 2023
African traders welcome end of China’s Covid travel curbs
France has banned the online sale of paracetamol until February, citing ongoing supply issues
Japan reportedly to give families 1 million yen per child to move out of Tokyo
×