UK ‘deeply troubled’ by China’s Hong Kong security law –

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LONDON: Britain on Tuesday voiced fears at China’s passing of a new national security law for Hong Kong, and said it would look into whether it broke an agreement between the two countries.
“This is a grave step, which is deeply troubling,” Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said after the law was approved by Beijing’s rubber-stamp parliament.
“We urgently need to see the full legislation, and will use that to determine whether there has been a breach of the Joint Declaration and what further action the UK will take.”
Raab plans to make a statement to parliament on Wednesday on Britain’s response, according to the main opposition Labour party, which receive advance notice of all speeches.
Hong Kong was under British jurisdiction until London handed it to China in 1997 with a guarantee that Beijing would preserve certain freedoms in the city, as well as judicial and legislative autonomy, for 50 years.
Beijing maintains that the so-called “One Country, Two Systems” deal is still being respected, but critics believe the new national security law threatens civil liberties in the financial hub.
Britain has repeatedly said it is worried about the impact of the legislation, imposed after protests last year against a proposal to allow extraditions to mainland China.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson has offered to extend visa rights to millions of Hong Kongers if the law was pushed through.
Speaking in parliament on Tuesday, Raab again urged China to “step back from the brink, respect the rights of the people of Hong Kong, and… live up to its international obligations through the joint declaration”.
He told lawmakers Britain remained committed to fulfilling its promises on visas and “any other action we want to take with international partners”.
Speaking to reporters earlier, Johnson was asked whether Beijing’s move would have an impact on Britain’s decision to allow Chinese telecoms giant Huawei to work on the country’s 5G data network.
“I’m not going to get into Sinophobia because I’m not a Sinophobe,” he said.
But he added that there was a need to “strike (a) balance” between protecting critical national infrastructure from “hostile state vendors”.
Critics of Huawei’s involvement believe some of the company’s equipment has vulnerabilities that could be potentially exploited by nefarious state actors and hackers.

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