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Statement by CE


The Chief Executive, Mr Tung Chee Hwa, issued the following statement today (July 7):

I announced last Saturday that in response to the concerns and aspirations of the community, the Government decided to introduce significant and important amendments to the three most controversial areas of the National Security (Legislative Provisions) Bill.

Many members of the community considered that the Government had responded positively to their concerns. However, quite a number of them hoped that the Government could allow them more time to study the amendments and the Bill in greater detail.

The Liberal Party issued a statement last night, asking the Government to defer the resumption of second reading of the Bill. Mr James Tien also tendered his resignation from the Executive Council.

I immediately convened a special meeting of the Executive Council. In light of the position of the Liberal Party, we have decided, after detailed deliberations, to defer the resumption of the second reading of the Bill and to step up our efforts to explain the amendments to the community in the coming days.

I wish to reiterate that the SAR has a constitutional duty to legislate for the protection of national security. Upon enactment of the legislation, the Government and the community can then work together to revitalise the economy.

I have accepted Mr Tien's resignation from the Executive Council. I welcome the Liberal Party's restatement of its continued support for the legislative work of the Bill in order to safeguard national security.

End/Monday, July 7, 2003


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