PSPD in English UN Advocacy 2022-08-01   267

The Hong Kong Government Should Aggressively Implement the Concluding Observations of the UN Human Rights Committee Right Now

The Hong Kong Government Should Aggressively Implement the Concluding Observations of the UN Human Rights Committee Right Now 

 

On July 27, the UN Human Rights Committee (hereinafter the “Committee”) issued its concluding observations on the fourth periodic report of Hong Kong. The UN human rights body made an assessment of the deteriorating condition of the rights of Hong Kong people due to the armed crackdown on protests against the extradition law in 2019, the enactment of the National Security Law in 2020, and the de facto abolition of the “One Country, Two Systems” policy.

 

Although the Hong Kong government insisted that the measures they took were justified, the Committee’s concluding observations identified and reflected many of the issues that have been criticized by the international community. The Committee stressed that laws enacted and applied by the Hong Kong authorities, including the National Security Law, seriously violate the human rights of Hong Kong people.

 

The Committee particularly recommended Hong Kong take concrete steps to repeal the current National Security Law and refrain from indiscriminate application of the National Security Law, its Implementation Rules, and sedition legislation. In addition, the Committee recommended Hong Kong guarantee the freedom of expression and freedom of assembly and association, and that Hong Kong should promptly provide up-to-date information on the implementation of the recommendations to the Committee

 

The concluding observations of the Committee are highly reasonable and the South Korean civil society reaffirms that a series of measures taken by the Hong Kong government was nothing but human rights infringements and anti-democratic measures that shall never be tolerated by the international community.

 

A number of Hong Kong people had no choice but to leave Hong Kong to avoid indiscriminate oppression by the authorities, while many activists have already been arrested, detained, and under trial by an unjust law. It was because the laws applied are in themselves violating human rights and unjust, as well as no due process was guaranteed in the investigations and trial processes that the Committee recommended immediate release of all persons who are arbitrarily arrested and detained.

 

The fact that the Hong Kong government is subject to a separate review by the Committee implies that itself is obliged to implement the recommendations of the UN under the Hong Kong Basic Law. Instead of repeating the claim that their actions were just, the Hong Kong government should consider what attitude it should take as a party to the implementation of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.

 

Above all, the Chinese government should actively cooperate so that the Hong Kong government can implement the concluding observations of the Committee. We warn that the Chinese government, a permanent member of the UN Security Council, nullifying the UN human rights body’s recommendations would be a grave mistake leading to a loss of trust from the international community.

 

Korean civil society organizations wish that the concluding observations of the UN Human Rights Committee provide at least a bit of hope and comfort to the Hong Kong people who have been struggling for democracy and human rights. We pledge to continue to unite and stand in solidarity for democracy and human rights in Hong Kong civil society. Furthermore, we will work together to abolish the National Security Law in both South Korea and Hong Kong.

 

August 1, 2022

 

Signed by

Asian Companions Against Brutality

Dasan Human Rights Center

Human Rights Movement Space ‘Hwal’

Korean House for International Solidarity

MINBYUN – Lawyers for a Democratic Society International Solidarity Committee

People’s Solidarity for Participatory Democracy (PSPD)

Platform.C

Hongkong-Korea Civic Alliance for Democracy

 

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