LCQ12: Reciprocal notification mechanism

     Following is a written reply by the Secretary for Security, Mr Ambrose S K Lee, to a question by Hon Albert Ho Chun-yan in the Legislative Council today (July 14):


     Under the reciprocal notification mechanism implemented since January 2001, the mainland public security authorities will notify the Hong Kong Police of the unnatural deaths of Hong Kong residents on the Mainland, as well as the imposition of criminal compulsory measures on Hong Kong residents by the mainland authorities. Similarly, the Hong Kong Police will notify the mainland authorities of the criminal prosecutions instituted by the Hong Kong Police Force, Customs and Excise Department and Immigration Department against mainland residents, as well as the unnatural deaths of mainland residents in Hong Kong. In this connection, will the Government inform this Council:

(a) of the respective numbers of notifications made by the enforcement agencies of both sides in each of the past five years; the number of mainland and Hong Kong residents involved; among them, the respective numbers of those on whom criminal compulsory measures were imposed and those who died an unnatural death, as well as the criminal charges involved;

(b) whether the Hong Kong Police, upon receipt of notifications from the mainland authorities, takes the initiative to assist the Hong Kong people in distress and their families; if so, of the form of assistance and the details; and

(c) whether it has conducted reviews regularly to ensure that the Government renders the support needed by the Hong Kong people in distress and their families through the reciprocal notification mechanism; if so, of the details?



     Our response to Hon Albert Ho Chun-yan's question is as follows:

(a) The statistics of the reciprocal notification mechanism in the past five years and from January to May of 2010 are at Annex.

(b) The notification mechanism aims to facilitate the prompt notification to family members of the subject involved. Hence, the Hong Kong Police will immediately seek to contact the family members of the subject after receiving notification from the mainland authorities. The family members, if they wish, may seek assistance from the Assistance to Hong Kong Residents Unit of the Immigration Department or the offices of the Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) in the Mainland which will endeavor to provide assistance as far as practicable. Based on past experience, the assistance to be provided include relaying to the relevant mainland authorities the specific requests of the family members, e.g. paying visit to subject, and providing information on the hiring of mainland lawyers.

(c) In general, the notification mechanism has been operating smoothly since its implementation in 2001, achieving the objective of prompt notification to family members.  Based on the experience in handling cases, the Government of HKSAR and the mainland authorities exchange views from time to time to further optimise the operation of the mechanism. For instance, the scope of the notification has been extended since June 2003 from cases of Public Security Ministry and the Customs to cover also cases of the Supreme People's Procuratorate and Ministry of State Security.

Ends/Wednesday, July 14, 2010
Issued at HKT 15:28