As China has imposed the draconian national security law in Hong Kong, Rajiv Kumar Chander, India’s ambassador and permanent representative to the United Nations in Geneva, on Wednesday appealed to the world body to address the concerns ‘seriously and objectively’. He also stated that India has been keeping a close watch on the recent developments in Hong Kong.
“Given the large Indian community that makes the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of China its home, India has been keeping a close watch on the recent developments. We have heard several statements expressing concerns on these developments. We hope the relevant parties will take into account these views and address them properly, seriously and objectively,” Chander said at a press briefing at the UN body in Geneva.
China imposes the national security law on June 30
The new national security law in Hong Kong criminalises ‘secession, subversion, terrorism and collusion with foreign powers’ and people convicted under the law could face life sentences. Hong Kong police made their first arrests just a day after the implementation of the new security law on June 30 by China. According to media reports, Hong Kong police arrested over 180 people as protesters had gathered to mark the 23rd anniversary of the handover and the end of British rule in the city. One of the demonstrators was holding a pro-independence flag following which he was arrested. Police used tear gas and pepper spray to disperse the crowd as a gathering of more than 50 people is currently banned as a precautionary measure to prevent the spread of Coronavirus.
Three women were also arrested under the new security law for allegedly displaying materials with pro-independence slogans. Hong Kong police further warned ‘anyone who organises, plans, commits or participates in committing secession or undermining national unification shall be guilty of an offence’.