Inside Story

How much of a headache is Hong Kong to China?

Twenty-three years after sovereignty was returned to China, Hong Kong faces the biggest threat to its prized autonomy.

China is moving towards passing a national security law for Hong Kong that could see the most significant reduction in its autonomy since it was handed over by Britain in 1997.

Premier Li Keqiang announced the bill at the National People’s Congress, China’s biggest annual political gathering.

The draft law has seven articles and will almost certainly be approved by the congress.

Once passed, it would allow the Chinese agencies to operate in Hong Kong to ”prevent, stop and punish acts endangering national security”.

So, with China now planning to get directly involved in the territory’s affairs, is this an assault on democracy?

Presenter: Kamahl Santamaria


James To Kun-sun – senior legislator for Hong Kong’s Democratic Party in the Legislative Council

Andreas Fulda – senior fellow with the Asia Research Institute at the University of Nottingham

Rong Ying – vice president of the China Institute of International Studies