Friday, May 29, 2020

Hong Kong national security legislation justified in every aspect

Star Online:

Hong Kong national security legislation justified in every aspect

Henry Litton

Former Court of Final Appeal judge
Hong Kong Special Administrative Region

Face to Face with Hon. Henry Litton GBM CBM JP, Former Permanent ...

Henry Denis Litton CBE, GBM 

Every nation on Earth, unless a failed state, has laws protecting national security.

In Hong Kong, there is a set of laws, inherited from the colonial government, dealing in a haphazard way with some of the complex issues involving national security. These can be found in Part I of the Crimes Ordinance, the Societies Ordinance and the Official Secrets Ordinance.

No one pretends that these laws are anywhere near adequate to deal with the complicated matters of today. This problem was recognized by the drafters of the Basic Law: Hence Article 23. This required the Hong Kong SAR government, upon being established on July 1,1997, to enact laws to prohibit treason, secession, sedition, subversion, prohibition of foreign entities forming political alliances with entities in Hong Kong.

An attempt was made by the colonial government, shortly before the handover, to ease the task of the future SAR government by upgrading the national security laws. This failed to win support in the Legislative Council.

The matter was revived in 2002 when, in September of that year, the government issued a consultation document on proposals to implement Article 23. It made a strong case for implementation. At paragraph 1.4 it said:

“All countries round the world ... have express provisions on their statute books to prevent and punish crimes which endanger the sovereignty, territorial integrity and security of the state. Therefore, while nationals of a state enjoy the privilege of protection provided by it on the one hand, the individual citizens have a reciprocal obligation to protect the state by not committing criminal acts which threaten the existence of the state, and to support legislation which prohibits such acts on the other hand.

The proposals took into account the whole range of constitutional guarantees of personal freedoms: speech, expression, the press; and freedom from arbitrary arrest, invasion of the home, etc.

As regards the crime of treason, the then-solicitor-general explained:

“The proposed new offence of treason will be narrower than the existing offence. It will therefore impose no new restrictions on freedom of speech. The only situation in which words could amount to treason under the proposals would be when the words instigate a foreigner to invade the PRC or assist a public enemy at war with the PRC. For example, if the PRC is at war with a foreign country and a Hong Kong resident broadcasts propaganda for the enemy.”

A U.S. Consulate representative (left) receives a letter from protesters as people march from Charter Garden to the US consulate in Hong Kong.

A U.S. Consulate representative (left) receives a letter from protesters as people march from Charter Garden to the US consulate in Hong Kong

Hong Kong rips ‘radical protesters’ for asking Trump to intervene

Hong Kong’s government warned the US to stay out of its affairs on Monday after thousands of protesters urged President Trump to “liberate” the China-ruled city and called on Congress to pass a bill that would allow Chinese and Hong Kong officials to be slapped with economic sanctions.

It blasted the crowds who sang “The Star-Spangled Banner” as they marched to the US Consulate on Sunday as the “illegal behavior of radical protesters” and cautioned that ​“foreign legislatures should not interfere in any form in the internal affairs” of Hong Kong.

​The throngs of protesters appealed to Trump to “stand with Hong Kong” and “liberate Hong Kong” and make sure that Congress pass the Hong Kong Human Rights and Democracy Act of 2019.

Disqualifying Joshua Wong - WSJ

Joshua Wong
'darling' of Western (especially US) Press

He played major role in persuading US politicians to pass the Hong Kong Human Rights and Democracy Act during the recent protests to eff his own Hong Kong's trade and economy

What should have happened following the publication of the consultation paper was mature debate within the community, for the consultation document was not something that could have been absorbed fully at one glance.

Regrettably, leaders in the community who claimed to represent the people adopted an ideological stance, claiming the proposal as an attack on Hong Kong’s autonomy.

This was taken up by some of the popular newspapers. The thinking people in the community were given no space for mature reflection. A mass protest rally was organized. Young and old took to the streets.

Hong Kong authorities accused of seizing on coronavirus outbreak ...

The result was that the National Security (Legislative Provisions) Bill, introduced in LegCo in February 2003, was withdrawn, leaving the ramshackle colonial laws as defense against attacks on national security.

As things stood globally at that time, the world was in relative peace. The Iraq invasion had not yet taken place. The constitutional need in Hong Kong to implement Article 23 was held in abeyance, through two successive changes in the post of chief executive.

The world scene has since totally changed. The tension between nations has vastly increased, with the threat of trade war, cyber war possibly escalating into open conflict. The clash of navies in the South China Sea is regarded as a real possibility.

In these circumstances the need to upgrade and improve upon national security laws seems a matter of common sense.

And herein lies the crux of the problem facing Hong Kong today, which has attracted, once again, worldwide attention. And, as usual, the media has immediately danced to the tune of sound bytes, not having the time to study the issues in depth: answering to the exigencies of the daily-news cycle. Who, reporting on the issues of today, has read the government’s consultation document of September 2002?

The truth is this. Since October last year, the Hong Kong legislature has been dysfunctional. Except for matters of finance, it has ceased to operate as a legislature. An incident in the LegCo chamber on May 18 says it all: councilors brawling like children in a playground, a photo flashed worldwide showing a member screaming and kicking being forcibly removed from the council chamber. Have those reporting on the incident reflected on its deeper significance, beyond a shameful episode in a troubled land?

What it means is this: No law can be passed in Hong Kong. In the meanwhile, internal security has worsened, with increasing evidence of terrorist activities aimed at bringing the Hong Kong police to its knees and overthrowing the government. The anti-government movement seems well-funded and this raises the question as to the source of the funds. Since October last year a state of grave public danger has existed and been recognized as such by the government. A threat of this nature to Hong Kong - a region of China - clearly constitutes a national security threat.

Behind a made-for-TV Hong Kong protest narrative, Washington is ...

As Tung Chee-hwa, former chief executive, said on May 25: As Hong Kong had failed to enact its own security legislation for over 20 years, it has become an easy target for hostile foreign opportunists to disrupt public order, using Hong Kong in effect as a proxy for a wider power conflict.

What then should a national government do, seeing that the regional government has, in effect, become powerless?

The answer is the proposal before the National Peoples’ Congress: to enact by promulgation laws for the protection of Hong Kong and of the nation.

The draft decision emphasises the cardinal policies that lie behind the proposal: “one country, two systems”; Hong Kong people governing Hong Kong; and high degree of autonomy for the special administrative region.

When passed, the laws will be enforced by the Hong Kong courts exercising jurisdiction under the common law system - a system based upon the presumption of innocence, and proof of guilt beyond reasonable doubt. Allied with this are the rules which emphasise that prejudicial evidence not directly relevant to guilt must be excluded.

Hong Kong protesters ask President Trump to 'liberate' Chinese ...

The explanatory document issued by the vice-chairman of the NPCSC contains a warning which the legal profession and the judiciary in Hong Kong should heed: “Efforts must be made at the state-level to establish and improve the legal system and enforcement mechanism of the HKSAR”.

At the regional level - Hong Kong’s level - enforcement mechanism has, for all the world to see, also broken down. Unrest and street violence have been going on for nearly one year - dampened to an extent by the overriding crisis caused by Covid-19. Very serious crimes have been committed. The health crisis did not erupt until March this year. Before then the courts were capable of functioning normally. Yet only a handful of persons arrested had been convicted, and none for crimes like attempted murder, grievous bodily harm, arson, criminal damage to transport infrastructure.

Bully tactics have been deployed. Families of police officers threatened. Businesses deemed “pro-Beijing” vandalised. People have been cowed into silence. And when people see that lawyers as a whole seem sympathetic to the rioters they get confused. Wherein lies the true values of the Hong Kong community?

The common law lies at the heart of the “one country, two systems” policy, and is the foundation for Hong Kong’s success as a global financial centre. There is no reason why such policy should not go beyond 2047 if it harmonizes with the broader national interests. Hence it is very much in the interests of young lawyers to truly support that policy, to work toward the success of that policy: They will be at the high noon of their professional lives in 2047. And the duty of the older lawyers, the leaders of their profession, is to cultivate a climate conducive to their juniors’ success. But is this what they are doing in fact?

Hong Kong protesters call on Trump to 'liberate' them from Chinese ...

Hong Kong protesters march to US Consulate to call for help from ...

Extradition bill protesters hold 'marathon petition', calling at ...

China colonization??? He prefers British or US colonization

Clearly radical changes at all levels are called for, no less than in the judiciary.

The starting point is surely to internalise this key concept that Hong Kong is a mere region of China. A small dot on the map of China; 7.4 million people in a population of 1.4 billion. Nothing more. To make it more, greater, more influential in the world, it requires nurturing in an authentic way.

It is beyond the scope of this paper to go into aspects of reform necessary to “improve the legal system and enforcement mechanism of the HKSAR”, in the words of the vice-chairman of the NPCSC. But those words must surely sound as a wake-up call for the legal profession and the judiciary.


Wikipedia tells us:

Henry Denis Litton CBE, GBM (Chinese transliteration: 烈顯倫) (born 7 August 1934) is a retired judge in Hong Kong.

Laws of SAR survival laid down | The Standard

Early life and education

Born into a Eurasian family in Hong Kong, Henry Litton excelled in school during his early years first at the Diocesan Boys' School in Hong Kong and then in England which he was educated at King's College, Taunton and Merton College, Oxford, where he graduated with honours in jurisprudence.

His father, John Letablere Litto (1903-1941), served as a gunner in the Hong Kong Volunteer Defence Corps. He was killed in action on 18 December 1941 defending Hong Kong from Japanese attack, and was laid to rest in Stanley Military Cemetery. His mother Enid Tak-ching Lo-Litton was a tennis player and won an impressive thirteen Hong Kong National Championships over a 24-year span. John's maternal uncle was the lawyer Sir Lo Man-kam, part of a prominent Eurasian family.

Legal career

After passing the Bar exam in 1959, Litton entered into private practice in Hong Kong where he was eminently successful as a trial lawyer. Litton was appointed Queen's Counsel in 1970 and co-founded the Hong Kong Law Journal with Gerald de Basto QC, another local barrister. He also served as Chairman of the Bar Association from 1971 to 1973, from 1977 to 1980 and again from 1983 to 1985.

Henry Litton - Alchetron, The Free Social Encyclopedia

Litton was appointed in 1987 an Officer of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire for his contribution to the law and was elevated to the bench in 1992 as a Justice of Appeal. He rose steadily through the ranks, becoming Vice-President of the Court of Appeal in 1995 and a Permanent Judge of the Court of Final Appeal (Hong Kong's court of last resort) in 1997, when British colonial rule in Hong Kong ended and China resumed its sovereignty over the region.

He assumed senior status three years later, citing personal reasons. Until 2015, he continued to hear cases on a part-time basis as a non-permanent judge of the Court he served.

In 2007, Litton was appointed a Judicial Commissioner, as well as a Justice of Appeal, of the Supreme Court of Brunei Darussalam.

Extra-judicial life

In 2019, Litton released his book 'Is the Hong Kong Judiciary Sleepwalking to 2047?', in which he criticised numerous aspects of Hong Kong’s legal system, focusing particularly on the misuse of judicial reviews in recent years. He also argued that courts ought not serve as a “debating chamber” to challenge government policy.


  1. the national law bar foreign judge including this tokkok gweilo, so just get lost, u r a nobody.

    1. he's a Hongkie, born there, wakakaka

    2. he is also a british.

      me born in msia, can i enrol uitm?

    3. Go & panegyrize yr dangdut pals for that 'right' lah!

      Don't forget to tell them u can 'suci-ed'!

    4. He will be 'somebody' if he defend fake DEMONcrazy, hehehe

    5. thats exactly what this gweilo is doing, not using thesaurus, we call that kiss ccp ass.

      on the contrary, i oppose a raciat cum authoritarian umno lead govt, from bn to pn unlike yr type, so flexible one.

    6. U oppose a raciat cum authoritarian umno lead govt, from bn to pn by DOING what?

      Many rounds of appy dangdut hour with the same bunch of people u claimed to opposed!

      Very flexible indeed.

      Learn from those Taichung uncle Sam worshippers & more. No?

    7. by simply telling what is wrong with racist n authoritarian. see, no need tok3tok4, usa, red indian, iraq, afghanistan, imperialism, trump, non malay, kafir, rohingya, ummah etc.

    8. What have u been telling to yr 蔡妹妹? Yr uncle trump & yr auntie pommie?

      "wrong with racist n authoritarian"!!


      Bcoz u only know how to fart mah. & they just take u for nothing.

  2. Litton's father John was a Brit, therefore Henry qualifies (and almost definitely has) a full British passport. He can run away to motherland anytime he wants to therefore can pretend to be brave speaking up for Beijing. So now he is a friend of China but by law has right of citizenship in Britain. How safe can that be?

    Like Bersatu, one leg on either side ha ha ha....

    And KT's good matey RPK, born in Msia but because mother is a Brit, qualifies to be a Brit, runs away at the first sign of a legal suit, coward, not like Anwar and Guanee who stay put, bravely face the kangaroo court over trumped up charges.

    Some people are also lucky to be economic "refugees", can hide in kwai-loh countries like Oz but still make comments about their land of birth, like Litton.

    So if now many HongKongers also want to be "refugees" from their land of birth, why deny them that wish?

    1. Wakakakakaka…

      "So if now many HongKongers also want to be "refugees" from their land of birth, why deny them that wish?"

      Who is stopping them?


      Yr auntie pommie?

  3. This guy reminds me of Malaysian retired very Senior judges who have re-emerged as Race-Religion champions.

    In Litton's case it is CCP Perkasa.

  4. If Britain or any other country were to grant special permanent residence visas to qualifying HongKongers leading to possible citizenship it would be no different than Australia granting PR to Malaysian citizens. Don't even have to consult or seek permission from Beijing, like Malaysians don't have to seek Home Ministry approval to get Oz PR.

    Beijing would have no reason to complain that it is interference with local affairs, that is utter rubbish. This is just global practice.

    But I expect this 5,000 year old civilization will cry like a spoilt bully and brat and make all kinds of retaliation.

    1. "But I expect this 5,000 year old civilization will cry like a spoilt bully and brat and make all kinds of retaliation."

      So did that 犬养 katak tell u that?

      Or u created it yrself?

      Those pommie & Yankee lovers r free to leave! Nobody is stopping them except auntie pommie & uncle Sam r not giving them the passage! Just plain words with many caveats that even those moronic HK 废青 know deep in their f*cked mind r all farts.

      Only u believe those foul gaseous bcoz as a kiapoci u just want to rant!

      Ooop… u have forgotten about what u have said about foreigner interfering with HK business!

      Podiah… mfer!

  5. This is a great move.....nothing like 3 million industrious yellow skin people to help post-Brexit Britain plus the accumulated wealth they will bring with them, but I expect Beijing the spoilt bully and brat will throw tantrums, try to stop the people and money flow, and maybe impose all kinds of trade restrictions with Britain.

    Britain may offer 'path to citizenship' for nearly 3mil in Hong Kong

    Britain is prepared to offer extended visa rights and a pathway to citizenship for almost 3 million Hong Kong residents in response to China’s push to impose national security legislation in the former British colony.

    China’s parliament has approved a decision to go forward with national security legislation for Hong Kong that democracy activists, diplomats and some in the business world fear will jeopardise its semi-autonomous status and its role as a global financial hub.

    1. Go put some good words to yr auntie pommie.

      Take them all & not need to reinvent another 'maybe' clause for their long forlorned citizenship.

      These moronic HK 废青 would definitely be 'helps' to revitalize the broken UK economy. Just print more British pound to furlough their pending migrations on top of the already deplorable home unemployment rate!

      Don't be shy. Keep writing to yr past colonial master to do her altruistic humane act that she has been procrastinated since 1997.

  6. All the sour grapes rant from the 3 blind DEMONcrazy mice, hehehehe

    All pretending not to acknowledge that Hong Kong was ceded away for a certain period to stop the rapacious Brit colonialists from further doping the Chinese then. Now Hong Kong had rightly returned after 156 years.

    All pretending not to understand what is One Country with 2 Administrations, but eventually and ultimately, Hong Kong will be absorbed back to One Country One System. Half way through, these local Gang of Four (politicians) in Hong Kong in cahoots with business tycoons ( the likes of Jimmy fuckery Lai ) decided to secede, which is treasonous, plain and simple. For such a crime, the punishment is death. ( this is a "fact known all over the world", hahaha )

    All know that these bastards make use of young boys and young girls barely out of schools to do the fighting for them in the streets, while they hatched their plans with those in foreign countries...another crime punishable by death, nothing less. These kids were first brainwashed and they became vicious, merciless, not a shred of humanity left in them. This is the handiwork of these adult gangsters, and the hypocrites from the West played into this to serve their bigger interest. These bastards kept their own children far away in their second homes in Canada and UK, living a luxurious and carefree life...not for them donning the teargas masks and learning how to make fire bombs, how to kill with bow and arrow, how to burn out eyes with laser beams, how to set the elderly on fire. The children of these bastards are too precious to endanger themselves rioting in the streets.

    The 3 blind mice here are so oblivious of their own Chinese roots that they too ought to be lumped as Si Kitol too perhaps, hehehe, matsalleh wannabe. The West propaganda of the deformed Democracy and its chant of fake liberty and fake human rights and fake equal rights have its hooks embedded too deep into them that they are as brainwashed as these Hong Kong rioters, although I would venture to guess that besides being brainwashed, some might have some other agenda too. Or maybe deep down, if they have any depth at all, they already knew that the West DEMONcrazy is all fake but are putting up a fake front, hehe. Nothing is straight forward it seems, hehehe.

  7. "Britain may offer 'path to citizenship' for nearly 3mil in Hong Kong"

    Nothing would make Beijing more happy, deliriously happy, if the above come true. It is like taking out the rotten rubbish from their home...all these trouble makers and thugs. But the Brits and the lying Reuters are infamous for such sleigh of hands. They lay out such dreams and then they will dash them when the timing is right. Hopefully these gwailos keep up such appearance for as long as possible so that these desperados will happily make plans to move out of Hong Kong and will quit trashing the city. Fingers crossed.

    1. Reuters didn't make it up, they quoted the delightfully named Priti Patel the UK Secretary of State for Home Affairs.

    2. Pariah, have yr fluid England has no meaning for 'maybe'?

    3. Priti Patel the UK Secretary of State for Home Affairs can fart to please his ego.

      But he has ZILCH power to do what he said.


      Delightfully pettiness of benignancy, I supposed!

    4. Reuters are infamous for its slanted reporting, particularly by not so much the sins of commission but the sins of omission. That's lying by my book.

      "the silent lie - the deception which one conveys by simply keeping still and concealing the truth"