Nov. 11 (UPI) — All of Hong Kong’s pro-democracy lawmakers resigned collectively Wednesday to protest a brand new legislation by China that permits for the removing of “unpatriotic” sitting legislators.
Fifteen lawmakers in Hong Kong’s Legislative Council introduced that they may resign after 4 of their colleagues had been eliminated below the brand new measure, which was handed by the Nationwide Individuals’s Congress Standing Committee, China’s prime legislative physique.
The decision stipulates that Hong Kong legislators will instantly lose their positions for infractions resembling selling independence and interesting in “unpatriotic” acts thought of to threaten nationwide safety.
“We announce we are going to resign from our positions as our colleagues are being disqualified by the central authorities’s ruthless transfer,” Democratic Celebration Chairman Wu Chi-wai advised reporters.
Hong Kong Chief Govt Carrie Lam instantly utilized the brand new legislation to unseat pro-democracy legislators Alvin Yeung, Kwok Ka-ki, Dennis Kwok and Kenneth Leung.
The 4 had been beforehand barred from operating for re-election.
Wu stated the brand new legislation successfully eliminates “separation of powers” below Hong Kong’s Fundamental Regulation, established in 1997 after Britain relinquished management of town to Beijing.
The Fundamental Regulation enshrines the idea of “one nation, two techniques,” below which town is assured rights together with freedom of meeting and freedom of speech not accessible in mainland China.
“All the ability will probably be centralized within the chief government — a puppet of the central authorities,” Wu stated. “So in the present day is the top of ‘one nation, two techniques.'”
The mass resignation left Hong Kong’s 70-seat Legislative Council with no opposition lawmakers.
The brand new legislation is the most recent in a sequence of steps by China to intervene in Hong Kong affairs after a wave of pro-democracy protests final yr. Beijing has since imposed a wide-ranging nationwide safety legislation and has allowed the native authorities to delay native elections for a yr.