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LCQ16: Arrangement when Standing Committee of National People's Congress Chairman inspects Hong Kong

     Following is a question by Dr the Hon Kenneth Chan and a written reply by the Secretary for Security, Mr Lai Tung-kwok, in the Legislative Council today (June 1):


     The Chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress (the Chairman) visited Hong Kong from the 17th to the 19th of last month to attend the Belt and Road Summit and related activities.  To ensure the personal safety of the Chairman and dignitaries of other countries participating in the Summit, the Police deployed substantial police manpower, and the Transport Department also made special traffic arrangements.  Some members of the public have complained to me that the relevant arrangements involved the temporary closure of a number of roads and pedestrian facilities, which had greatly affected their daily living.  In this connection, will the Government inform this Council:

(1) of the details of the road sections or lanes closed off temporarily during the Chairman's visit to Hong Kong, including (i) the names of the roads involved, (ii) the numbers of road sections or lanes concerned, (iii) the dates, time and total numbers of hours of the closures, and (iv) the estimated number of vehicles affected (set out in a table by name of the road and road section);

(2) of the details of the pedestrian facilities (e.g. pedestrian crossings, footbridges and pedestrian subways) fully or partially closed off during the Chairman's visit to Hong Kong, including (i) the locations of the pedestrian facilities, (ii) the dates, time and total numbers of hours of the closures, and (iii) the estimated number of pedestrians affected; whether the authorities had announced the relevant arrangements and informed the management staff of the buildings nearby before closing off such pedestrian facilities; if they had, of the details; if not, the reasons for that;

(3) as it has been reported that the vehicle fleet of the Chairman had travelled in contravention of road markings and traffic signs, including driving in an opposite direction of the traffic and failing to stop in compliance with traffic light signals, whether such driving situations were part of the special traffic arrangements; if so, of the details, including (i) the number of times of driving in contravention of regulations and (ii) the relevant reasons, as well as (iii) the names of the roads and road sections involved; and

(4) of the number of police officers performing duties relating to the Chairman's visit to Hong Kong on each day of the visit, with a tabulated breakdown by the (i) region and (ii) operation unit to which they belong as well as by their (iii) rank and (iv) specific duty?



     The Government's consolidated reply to Dr the Hon Kenneth Chan's question is as follows:

     Whenever national leaders or foreign dignitaries come to Hong Kong, the Police have the responsibility of taking appropriate security measures for their personal safety, and have to ensure that the meetings and other events to be attended by them will be conducted in a safe and orderly manner.  The arrangement when the Chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress (NPCSC), Mr Zhang Dejiang, inspected Hong Kong between May 17 and 19 was no exception.  In this connection, the Police had conducted comprehensive and professional risk assessments on factors including the situations of the international community, the Mainland and neighbouring areas, local circumstances, intelligence, the dignitary under protection and the events in which he would participate, and so on, and then adopted appropriate counter-terrorism security measures and deployment.

     Chairman Zhang stayed at a hotel in Wan Chai North while in Hong Kong.  He attended the Belt and Road Summit at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre (HKCEC), and went to Hong Kong Science Park, Tseung Kwan O and Sau Mau Ping to attend events.  The Police have provided appropriate and necessary protection, including personal and traffic escort, in that period.  On account of the relevant risk assessment and the actual situation at the time, the Police implemented temporary traffic diversions and intermittent traffic control measures along the route of the motorcade, as well as short-term crowd control measures on the adjacent walkways and crossing facilities.  In putting such security measures in place, the Police not only strived to ensure the safety of the protected person, but also made every effort to minimise the impact on the public.

     During the operation, police officers were deployed for on-scene guidance and assistance to pedestrians and road users.  While adhering to the principle of not compromising the confidentiality of such security operation, the Police have assigned Police Community Relations Officers to liaise with the district organisations, business operators or units concerned to explain the special arrangements to be adopted during the security operation, with a view to minimising any possible impact.

     Only when there is security consideration shall the Police intermittently introduce necessary short-term traffic and crowd control measures.  Prior to the implementation of the security measures and deployment in question, the Police held a press conference on May 15 to promulgate the arrangements of setting up security zones in Wan Chai North, which included closure of the HKCEC peninsula to the north of Convention Road from 0.00am of May 18 to 12 mid-night that followed.  In addition, to tie in with the horse racing events at Happy Valley Racecourse on May 18, the Police also introduced traffic diversions in the nearby areas of Causeway Bay and Happy Valley.

     The security measures and deployment concerned were mainly conducted by the Operations and Support Department, Crime and Security Department and other support units of the Police.  As the actual security deployment is a matter of operation details, any disclosure of such details is undesirable, because it may let criminals get hold of the Police's operational strategies and details thereof, which may compromise the Police's law enforcement capabilities.

Ends/Wednesday, June 1, 2016
Issued at HKT 17:10


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