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West adopts double standard on Hong Kong: China Daily editorial

chinadaily.com.cn | Updated: 2020-05-27 20:00

File photo shows the scenery in Hong Kong, China. [Photo/Xinhua]

Even judged by Western terms, what has happened in Hong Kong since last June has broken the boundaries of a democratic movement.

No country, not even the United States, which proclaims itself to be the flag-bearer for democracy and which is worshipped by some of the radicals in Hong Kong as the beacon for their violent acts, would sit idle should one of its cities be threatened by such mob violence and even terrorism and be at risk of falling into the abyss of chaos and lasting social disorder.

Western countries, such as the US, the United Kingdom, Australia and Canada, have sound national security laws, which have explicit provisions on separatism, terrorism, treason, espionage, secession, subversion of the government, participation in riots and other crimes. Offenders could face more than 10 years of imprisonment, even life imprisonment or death penalty.

The US itself has formulated many laws to safeguard national security, and laws such as the Patriot Act and the Homeland Security Act were only passed after the terrorist attacks in 2001. Under US law, deliberately spreading and persuading others to overthrow the government by force is a subversive offense which carries a maximum penalty of 20 years' imprisonment.

For homegrown terrorists, the US police have the right to search the telephone records, e-mails, medical, financial and other records of suspects. The US has even adopted legislation on national security in education, and it has set restrictions on foreign investments in the name of national security.

Yet the US has the nerve to point an accusing finger at China's move to close the national security loophole in Hong Kong. This is typical of the double standard it employs against China.

The absence of a national security law in Hong Kong has long been taken advantage of by local and foreign anti-China forces and encouraged them to slip further on the road of violence, subversion and terrorism.

Yet when China's top legislature started to deliberate a draft decision on establishing and improving the legal system and enforcement mechanisms for the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region to safeguard national security, Western politicians decried the move.

Any country would do its utmost against separatist elements. Anyone who really wants Hong Kong to enjoy long-term stability as well as a steady implementation of the "one country, two systems" policy will understand and support China's move.

China is fully justified in taking up legal weapons to defend its national security. The unfounded accusations and criticism of China's move by Western politicians not only lay bare their hypocrisy and double standards but also that they are willing to jeopardize Hong Kong's future in their bid to curb China's rise.

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