European leaders have condemned China for the "deplorable decision" to pass the new security law in Hong Kong, warning that this will jeopardize Beijing's reassessment as a reliable economic partner.
According to the news reported by “The Guardian”, the President of the European Council (EC) regretted the decision considering it to be a “serious threat” that undermines Hong Kong’s “high degree of autonomy” and that it can have “negative effects on independence of the judicial system and the rule of law ”. Charles Michel underlined the statements saying finally: "we deplore this decision".
Ursula von der Leyen endorsed the words of Charles Michel recalling the various warnings from the international community and the European Union (EU) against passing this law.
“We made it clear on a number of occasions, including in our direct contacts last week with the Chinese leadership, that the new legislation is not in line with Hong Kong's basic law or China's international commitments. It is a very serious matter for us and we are seriously concerned ”, declared Ursula von der Leyen, at the same press conference.
Asked about the European reaction, Von der Leyen admitted that the EU has repeatedly warned that "China would risk very negative consequences if it actually moved forward with this legislation, including in terms of business confidence, China's reputation and public perception in Hong Kong" .
"We remain in contact with our international partners in this matter and we will analyze very carefully how to respond", he added.
The new security law, passed by parliamentarians in Beijing this Tuesday, aims to end protests against the government in Hong Kong, criminalizing secession, subversion, terrorism and conflict, a measure that has sparked fears that it might reduce freedoms in the semi-autonomous region.
The non-governmental organization Amnesty International said in a statement today that passing the law represents a major "threat" to human rights in Hong Kong and that "from now on China will have the power to impose its laws against anyone it considers suspected of committing a crime ”.
The international community, with the United States and the European Union in the spotlight, in addition to several NGOs, has expressed more than once the fear that the law will serve to silence critical voices in Hong Kong, after a year of protests in the former British colony.