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LCQ6: Involvement of external forces in internal affairs of Hong Kong

     Following is a question by Dr Hon Kenneth Chan and a reply by the Secretary for Security, Mr Lai Tung-kwok, in the Legislative Council today (November 5):


     The Chief Executive (CE) said earlier in a media interview that external forces were involved in the Occupy Central movement.  CE subsequently indicated that he would duly consider at appropriate time whether to disclose the related evidence.  In this connection, will the Government inform this Council:

(1) whether it has conducted any form of intelligence gathering or investigation on the alleged involvement of external forces in the Occupy Central movement, and whether it has gathered intelligence in collaboration with the State security organs of the Central People's Government or overseas intelligence agencies; if so, of the details; if it has not conducted any investigation or gathered intelligence, the basis for CE's comment that external forces were involved in the Occupy Central movement;

(2) whether it has concrete evidence on hand at present about the involvement of external forces in the Occupy Central movement; if so, of the details (including the overseas countries or organisations involved), and the reasons for the Government not making public such evidence at present; of the circumstances under which it would be appropriate time to consider whether to disclose the related evidence; and

(3) whether it will take any form of follow-up action on the alleged involvement of external forces in the Occupy Central movement; if so, of the details?



     Since the beginning of the "Occupy Central" (OC) movement, different analyses have been made and views expressed by Hong Kong and overseas communities, politicians and media on whether external forces have been involved in or have influenced the movement directly or indirectly.  The issue has aroused concerns locally and overseas.  In response to a question raised by the programme host at a TV interview on October 19, 2014 and when speaking at a media stand-up on October 21, 2014, the Chief Executive (CE) pointed out that the involvement of external forces in the OC movement was not a mere speculation.  Hong Kong, as part of China and itself a highly open city, has been operating within a rather complicated international environment and exposed to the influence of external forces.

     At a regular press conference on October 20, 2014, the spokesperson of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs remarked that some foreign individuals and forces attempted to interfere with Hong Kong affairs, exert influence on Hong Kong's development, and even side with or incite illegal activities such as the OC movement.  The Ministry of Foreign Affairs also reiterated that Hong Kong affairs fell entirely within China's internal affairs, and the Chinese side resolutely opposed the intervention in Hong Kong affairs by any external forces in any form.

    We believe that our community and the general public do not wish to see, and will not accept, any direct or indirect involvement of external forces in the internal affairs of Hong Kong or our nation, not to mention in such activities as the OC movement which disrupts social order and breaks the law.  Nor do they wish to see any change in the nature of Hong Kong's political or social activities or their complication as a result of influence of external forces.  We understand that the general public and the Legislative Council are concerned about how external forces get involved in and have influenced the OC movement, and the impact so caused.  However, the issue involves national and local security as well as a lot of other complicated and sensitive information.  In dealing with matters of this kind, we consider it inappropriate for the HKSAR Government, as for any other governments, to conduct an open discussion.  Having said that, the HKSAR Government will face and deal with the intervention of any external forces, to ensure that Hong Kong's constitutional reform may proceed within the framework of the Basic Law and on the basis of the decisions of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress.  As far as the OC movement is concerned, the HKSAR Government will restore social order in accordance with the law as soon as possible.  The CE has also indicated that the HKSAR Government would consider, at an appropriate time, how to disclose details of external forces' involvement and influence on the OC movement.

     It has been more than a month since the beginning of the OC movement.  Large-scale road blockage and acts of charging have adversely affected people's daily life and posed great pressure on Police work.  Worse still, OC participants have not only tried to rationalise their unlawful activities such as road blocking and charging on the pretext of "civil disobedience", they have recently also acted in open defiance of the temporary court injunctions.  The spread of this sense of lawlessness and its erosion of Hong Kong's rule of law are truly worrying.  Whether participants are joining the movement of their own volition or with the benefit of assistance from external forces, the continuation of the movement will only cause grave and long-lasting damage to the community of Hong Kong as a whole.

     OC is an unlawful gathering.  The Government will deal with this illegal activity, including its organisation, planning and funding, in a serious manner.  I must stress that Hong Kong is a city of rule of law.  The law enforcement agencies will deal with the illegal activities in accordance with the law.  Once again, I appeal to all organisers and participants to leave peacefully and stop obstructing the roads as soon as possible, so that social order and people's life may return to normal as early as possible.

     Thank you, President.

Ends/Wednesday, November 5, 2014
Issued at HKT 15:27


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