By Zhong Sheng
The decision of the National People’s Congress (NPC), the top legislature of China, to improve the electoral system of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) has won wide support from the 1.4 billion Chinese people, including Hong Kong compatriots.
However, a very few countries in the west recently issued statements to smear the NPC decision, which trampled on international laws and basic norms governing international relations and came as blatant interference in China’s internal affairs.
It only lays bare their ulterior motive to wish Hong Kong ill and use Hong Kong as a pawn to hold back China’s development at large.
Modern international relation system shall no longer be a jungle world from which justice and morality are absent. A very few western countries, however, have made unwarranted remarks about Hong Kong affairs on the pretext of democracy and freedoms, which only revealed their malicious intentions.
To improve the HKSAR’s electoral system is not about whether democracy and freedoms, but about a battle against those trying to grab power and commit subversion and infiltration.
These western countries must be aware that China today is no longer the old one that was once bullied by the Eight-Nation Alliance. Chinese people do not believe in fallacy. Nor are they afraid of evil forces. No country should expect China to trade its core interests away or tolerate any infringement on its sovereignty, security and development interests.
The statements made by these countries are nothing but ideological prejudices and hegemonic thinking, which expose their hypocrisy and double standard.
Democracy never existed in Hong Kong when it was still a colony ruled by a UK-appointed governor. When did any of these western countries care about its democracy back then? Their statements today are not about democracy at all. If they really intend to uphold democracy in Hong Kong, they would have never sat back and watched riots attempting to break into the Legislative Council building, or rebuked China’s effort to improve the region’s electoral system and bring long-term stability of democracy.
The value of democracy is how it brings governance, not chaos. Currently, the forces that impede Hong Kong’s governance and make troubles on Hong Kong affairs are exactly standing at the opposite side of democracy.
Since Hong Kong’s return to the motherland, the region has entered a new historical period featuring the principle of “one country, two systems” and high autonomy, and Hong Kong residents have enjoyed more extensive democratic rights than at any other time in history.
However, in recent years, anti-China disruptors jumped on the loopholes of the electoral system to endanger national security, and some western countries and external forces added fuel to the fire and covered up the rioters.
Facing such challenges, the NPC’s decision to improve the electoral system is totally necessary and is conducive to the stable development of Hong Kong’s democratic system. It has received wide support from Hong Kong compatriots, who believe it carries the central government’s caring for the special administrative region and will develop a new democratic electoral system with Hong Kong characteristics.
Hundreds of thousands of Hong Kong citizens recently joined an online petition to support the decision, which explained that to improve the electoral system is an unstoppable trend that complies to the aspiration of the people.
The Sino-British Joint Declaration has always been taken as a tool by certain western countries to meddle in Hong Kong affairs. They did this because they wanted to label China as an irresponsible country that is reluctant to fulfill its international obligations. However, what they did was just comparing apples to oranges.
It’s known by all that as China resumed exercise of sovereignty over Hong Kong, all rights and obligations of the British side under the Sino-British Joint Declaration were completed. And the Chinese government started administering it, in accordance with the Constitution and the Basic Law, not the Joint Declaration. The relevant countries have no legal basis or any right to cite the Joint Declaration to point fingers at Hong Kong affairs.
Hong Kong was, is and will always be China’s Hong Kong. To improve the region’s electoral system is a decision that carries the will of the Chinese people. The countries that covered up anti-China rioters have already been widely condemned by the international society, and no attempt of foreign countries to interfere in Hong Kong affairs and China’s domestic affairs will ever succeed. To have the patriots govern Hong Kong and eliminate anti-China forces is a necessary choice of all Chinese people and the history.
(Zhong Sheng is a pen name often used by People’s Daily to express its views on foreign policy.)