- Title: Leading Chinese scholar says Beijing can declare state of emergency in Hong Kong
- Date: 15th August 2019
- Summary: BEIJING, CHINA (AUGUST 15, 2019) (REUTERS) ACADEMICS SPECIALISING IN HONG KONG ASSEMBLED ON A PANEL FOR A NEWS CONFERENCE JOURNALISTS SITTING (SOUNDBITE) (Mandarin) RENMIN UNIVERSITY LAW PROFESSOR, HAN DANYUAN, WHEN SPEAKING ABOUT ARTICLE 18 OF THE BASIC LAW, SAYING: "The Standing Committee of the National People's Congress has the right to decide to declare a state of emergency in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region. This authority is clearly outlined in the constitution's basic law. It can make that judgement, it can make that decision and it can declare that." JOURNALISTS SITTING, CAMERA OPERATORS FILMING (SOUNDBITE) (Mandarin) RENMIN UNIVERSITY LAW PROFESSOR, HAN DANYUAN, SAYING: "There are legal criteria (for declaring a state of emergency in Hong Kong). One is that there is turmoil that threatens national unity and security. The other is that if the government of the special administrative region of Hong Kong is unable to control the situation, then according to section 4, article 18 of the constitution's basic law the NPC Standing Committee has the right to decide to declare a state of emergency (in Hong Kong). According to Article 4 of the Garrison Law, the People's Liberation Army Garrison in Hong Kong will provide specific assistance and implementation of measures according to the decisions taken by the central government." MEDIA (SOUNDBITE) (Mandarin) RENMIN UNIVERSITY LAW PROFESSOR, HAN DANYUAN, SAYING: "If the government of the special administrative region (of Hong Kong), when necessary, asks the central people's government (of China) for assistance from the Hong Kong garrison in the maintenance of public order and need rescuing from a disaster. That is, the Hong Kong government has the right to make that request." MEDIA (SOUNDBITE) (Mandarin) RENMIN UNIVERSITY LAW PROFESSOR, HAN DANYUAN, SAYING: "With the approval of the central people's government (of China) the garrison could send people to assist the maintenance of public order. So they have the right to put in such a request, and the right to decide on this and the garrison's principal function is that, to maintain security." MEDIA (SOUNDBITE) (Mandarin) DIRECTOR OF HONG KONG AND MACAU STUDIES AT THE SHANGHAI INSTITUTE OF INTERNATIONAL STUDIES, ZHANG JIAN, SAYING: "In fact if you look closely at the words that the Hong Kong and Macau affairs office have used, they have not said that the current trend in Hong Kong is one of terrorism. They are only saying these are the sprouts of terrorism, or acts which are approaching terrorism. This indicates the seriousness of the current trend. It indicates the violence in Hong Kong is moving towards terrorism, and if you don't take necessary legal measures to stop such acts it might morph into real terrorism." NEWS CONFERENCE IN PROGRESS
- Embargoed: 29th August 2019 11:55
- Keywords: Hong Kong protests basic law PLA Chinese troops state of emergency terrorism Han Danyuan
- Location: BEIJING, CHINA
- City: BEIJING, CHINA
- Country: China
- Topics: Society/Social Issues
- Reuters ID: LVA001ASBWC3R
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: China can declare a state of emergency in Hong Kong and send in troops according to the current law, a leading Beijing-based academic on Hong Kong studies said on Thursday (August 15).
Speaking at a news conference hosted by China's state council in Beijing, Renmin University Law School Professor and member of the Hong Kong basic law committee of the National People's Congress' Standing Committee, Han Danyuan, said that one of the conditions for such a declaration in the basic law is if there is "turmoil that threatens national unity and security."
Also on Thursday hundreds of China's People's Armed Police conducted exercises at a sports stadium in Shenzhen, as the U.S. State Department expressed concern that they could be deployed across the border in Hong Kong to break up protests wrecking the city. Later in the day, police carried out exercises in which they divided into two groups, one wearing black t-shirts similar to those worn by some protesters in Hong Kong.
Ten weeks of increasingly violent confrontations between police and protesters have plunged the city into its worst crisis since it reverted from British to Chinese rule in 1997. The protests represent one of the biggest challenges for Chinese President Xi Jinping since he came to power in 2012.
(Production: Martin Pollard)
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