編按：港府落實《港區國安法》、12 港人送中等香港人權問題持續引起國際關注，美國眾議員泰德．約霍（Ted Yoho）投稿《立場新聞》，指港人不應因為參與遊行或是批判政權等行使基本人權的舉動而身陷囹圄，美國與盟友會各盡所能向香港人提供協助，「同時也讓中共政府必須承擔違反承諾、踐踏國際條約的責任」，並祝願 12 港人早日平安歸來。（中文版見文末）
【Text by US Rep. Ted Yoho】
It is no secret that China has been strong-arming Hong Kong forcing its residents to flee oppression. The national security law punishes crimes of secession, subversion, terrorism, and collusion with foreign forces with up to life in prison.
Without consultation from Hong Kong, trampling on its sovereignty, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) under President Xi’s leadership, unilaterally approved the law. This is a clear violation of Beijing’s promise of “One Country, Two Systems” under which the British relinquished Hong Kong. The Sino-British Joint Declaration to maintain Hong Kong’s autonomy was intended to last until 2047.
In 1997, the British government and the CCP came to a handover agreement under which the CCP agreed to govern Hong Kong under the principle of “One Country, Two Systems,” where Hong Kong would enjoy a high degree of autonomy for the next 50 years. The national security law is one more clear indication of Beijing changing its mind on the agreement it promised to honor.
The vagueness of this national security law not only allows Beijing to exert more power over Hong Kong, but also provides the CCP with authority to bring vague charges and only serves to instill fear in Hong Kong citizens. Scores of people have already been arrested.
Recently, 12 young activists, terrified about the implications of the new law, fled the city by speedboat only to be apprehended by Chinese authorities. They have been detained in mainland China for over a month with no access to legal representation. Their case confirms the worst fears of Hong Kongers. No one in Hong Kong, or the rest of the world, should face life in prison for going to the street to exercise their free speech and speak truth to power in criticizing their government.
Enforcement of these new security laws are handled by the Chinese National Security Bureau. The bureau maintains a reputation for torture, handpicks judges loyal to Beijing, and is operating in the city for the first time.
For the people of Hong Kong, who have experienced freedom and democracy, having a system of oppression thrust upon them is not an option. It is clear based on its actions in redrawing its relationship with Hong Kong, that the Xi Regime never had any intention to uphold its promise to preserve Hong Kong’s autonomy and political freedoms until 2047.
Fearing for their lives, the people of Hong Kong have no choice but flee their homes. To accommodate the scramble, Australia, the United Kingdom, Vietnam, the Philippines, Singapore, Taiwan, and the U.S. have all proposed measures to help facilitate those individuals looking to resettle. Taiwan opened an office to help Hong Kongers the day the national security law came into force. Countries such as the US and the UK have enacted measures to make the pathway to citizenship less strenuous. All these steps are the right thing to do.
The destruction of “One Country, Two Systems” and the death of an autonomous Hong Kong is a matter that should concern everyone. This national security law is the final straw and the US must stand firm with the international community against the CCP.
Following Secretary Pompeo’s statement that the U.S. no longer recognizes Hong Kong’s sovereignty and the resulting backlash from Beijing only proves the CCP’s intention of using Hong Kong as a puppet to assert its bullying agenda. It is clear the CCP is rapidly moving to realize its territorial ambitions without regard for international condemnation or backlash.
The terms under which Great Britain handed over Hong Kong were clear. Beijing has violated this agreement and must be held accountable to their word. The CCP must change course to avoid irreparable damage to the increased destabilization of the region and to the international community. Specifically with the US-China relationship. The international community must unite against the CCP in order to counter the bullying tactics and threats the CCP has launched against those who would support Hong Kong.
The Hong Kong we see today is unrecognizable from before, where “One Country, Two Systems” has been forcibly molded into “One Country, One System.” We need to reject the recent actions by the CCP and impose consequences on Beijing for its actions towards Hong Kong.
The truth is President Xi and the CCP cannot survive with people who have tasted liberty, free thought, and self-determination. The US must continue to stand with the people of Hong Kong and work with our allies to put pressure on Beijing to honor their past agreements. The time is now to work together in pushing back against Beijing’s underhanded tactics and protect the people of Hong Kong.
惡法陰霾之下，十二位香港抗爭者別無選擇下只好離鄉別井逃往台灣，卻於中途不幸被中國當局逮捕。如今這十二位香港人被中國政府扣留超過一個月，依舊音訊全無，家人委派的律師未能探視他們，外界亦無從得知他們是否安好 — 香港人一直所擔心的情況最終還是發生了。