Macau activist Jason Chao on Tuesday said he believed the territory will voluntarily adopt the same national security law that China will impose in Hong Kong, especially the criminalisation of ties with foreign political organisations.
“I think Macau’s government will follow the law that the Central Government makes for Hong Kong,” said Jason Chao.
Macau has already passed (in 2009) the law on the defence of state security, set out in Article 23 of Macau’s ‘Miniconstitution’ (Basic Law), the same article that has been causing controversy in recent days in neighbouring Hong Kong, whose draft law was passed during the closing of the annual session of the Chinese legislature.
However, the law to be imposed on Hong Kong is more punitive than that which exists in Macau now, the activist stressed.
The law in question in Hong Kong prohibits any act of treason, separation, rebellion, subversion against the Central People’s Government, theft of state secrets, the organisation of activities in Hong Kong by foreign political organisations and the establishment of links with foreign political organisations by Hong Kong political organisations.
At the moment, he explained, the Macau law does not fully reflect Article 23, as a conspiracy with foreign governments, which could be used to prevent political contacts with organisations outside the territory, is not explicitly prohibited.
Jason Chao said that it is still possible for Macau associations and politicians to talk and lobby with foreign governments and international organizations.
“The Chinese government wants to criminalise this,” he said.
The statements were made during an online conference on a report made by the New Macau Association and the Macau Research Group which it sent to the UN Human Rights Committee, listing violations of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.
On Monday, the Chief Executive of Macau stressed that he wants to strengthen cooperation with neighbouring regions to prevent the risk of external interference and to defend national security and unification.
Macau will strengthen cooperation with neighbouring regions to create a joint prevention and control mechanism, increasing awareness in the prevention of risk, external interference and negative influences, said Ho Iat Seng, quoted in a statement issued by the Macau government on Monday evening after a meeting in the National People’s Assembly and the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference.
The aim is to defend national security and unification, guaranteeing the harmony and stability of local society.
Ho Iat Seng said to continue to strengthen the legislation of an improved management system and enforcement mechanism in the field of national security defence.
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