Update: No Article 23 for next 12 months: Carrie Lam

Dec 21, 2017

by Doreen Weisenhaus with contributions by Rick Glofcheski and Yan Mei Ning (Expanded Second Edition, Hong Kong University Press 2014)

Dec. 21, 2017 (RTHK) — Chief Executive Carrie Lam says it will be “very difficult” to enact national security laws in the coming 12 months and it’s not on her agenda for now.

In an exclusive interview with RTHK, Lam said she hopes people will not see the future legislation as something to be feared.

Beijing figures have repeatedly indicated in recent months that the central government is losing patience with Hong Kong over the lack of Basic Law Article 23 national security laws, especially in light of a small number of young people calling for the city’s independence.

Lam said dealing with Article 23 will be even more difficult than the issue of universal suffrage – a subject that triggered Occupy protests in 2014.

Lam said Hong Kong needs to first prepare itself for the new security laws, starting by removing all the negative labels the matter has:

“To achieve this is tougher than universal suffrage because universal suffrage seems to involve some common values. But I don’t know why, many people including some of the media, when article 23 is brought up, they will look at it like huge floods and fierce beasts,” she said…..As to when she will get the ball rolling, she said that will depend on when there is a favourable environment:

“I can’t say exactly when right now, but at least in the coming 12 months it will be very difficult. That’s why when I talk about the challenges for 2018, I haven’t put this on my agenda. This is not something that can be done in a short period of time,” she said.

See full RTHK interview and story here.