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Intervention in HK issues rejected
By Jiang Zhuqing (China Daily)
Updated: 2004-04-27 22:07

China Tuesday rebutted criticism from US and British officials on its top legislature's decision to modify the existing methods for selecting the Hong Kong's chief executive in 2007 and forming the Legislative Council in 2008.

"First I want to emphasize it is unquestionable that the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress adopted a decision according to the Basic Law Hong Kong SAR and its interpretations,'' said Foreign Ministry spokesman Kong Quan at a news conference.

He noted China is expresseing strong dissatisfaction towards US and British officials who gave no concern to the concrete situation of Hong Kong and who are interfering in the nation's domestic affairs, Kong said.

"We are Chinese... we don't allow or need foreign intervention," Chinese Foreign Minister Li Zhaoxing told reporters in Shanghai in remarks broadcast by Hong Kong television.

Any person without prejudice can clearly see that Hong Kong residents had no democratic rights at all before the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) returning to the motherland, Kong said.

Since returning, they have enjoyed wider democratic rights and freedoms, as well as having the right to select chief executive after the implementation of "one country, two systems,'' "Hong Kong people governing Hong Kong,'' high autonomy and the Basic Law, said the spokesman.

The adoption of the decision by NPC Standing Committee bears far-reaching significance in maintaining the implementation of "one country, two systems,'' safeguarding the interests of Hong Kong people from all walks of life, as well the healthy development of democratic system in according to the Basic Law, Kong stressed.

"Such a decision was made strictly under the law and in response to Chief Executive Tung Chee Hwa's relevant report, as well as on the basis of hearing opinions from all sides,'' Kong said.

Moreover, contents of the decision conforms to the Basic Law which rules that the Hong Kong SAR develop democracy in the principle of gradual and orderly progress and in the light of specific conditions of Hong Kong, said the spokesman.

It also demonstrates the consistent stance of the central government of supporting Hong Kong's democratic development, he added.

The NPC Standing Committee adopted a decision on Monday which favors modification of the existing methods for selecting the Hong Kong's chief executive in 2007 and forming the legislative council in 2008, but rules out the possibility of universal suffrage for the upcoming elections, reports said.

"The method of universal suffrage shall not apply to'' the election of the third chief executive of the HKSAR in 2007, nor to the election of all members of the fourth Legislative Council of the HKSAR in 2008, the decision said.

However, the decision said that specific methods for selecting the chief executive in 2007 and forming the legislative council in 2008 could be "appropriately modified" in accordance with the Basic Law, said the decision.

Current conditions do not satisfy the general election of the chief executive and the general election of all legislative council members, it said.

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