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Keywords and ‘made-simple’ Summary of the National Security
(Legislative Provisions) Bill
(1st edition – Subversion)

At present, there is no specific offence of Subversion 顛覆  in our laws. A new section will be added to the Crimes Ordinance in the future. The new section will provide that it is an offence of subversion to –

a)   disestablishes the basic system of the People’s Republic of China as established by the Constitution;

b)      overthrow the Central People’s Government; or

c)   intimidate the Central People’s Government

by using force or serious criminal means that seriously endangers the stability of the PRC or by engaging in the war.

Corresponding offences can be found in other jurisdictions such as the UK, USA, Canada, Australia and Singapore.

In Canada, for instance, it is subversion when one uses force or violence or violence for the purpose of overthrowing the government of Canada; or does an act of violence in order to intimidate Parliament.

In the USA, subversion means one conspires to overthrow, put down, or to destroy by force the US government, or to levy war against them, or to oppose by force the authority thereof, or by force to prevent, hinder, or delay the execution of any law of the US; or incite, set on foot, assist, or engage in any rebellion or insurrection against the authority of the US or the laws thereof, or give aid or comfort thereto.

The proposed law in Hong Kong states disestablishing the basic system of the PRC, or overthrowing or intimidating the Central government by using force or serious criminal means a subversion.

But what is the basic system of the PRC? Will shouting slogans calling for the end of one party policy, or asking for the establishment of a democratic society, be considered disestablishing the basic system of the PRC?

We will leave these for our next discussion.

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Note: Credit is due to the Hon Bernard Chan for sharing these information with me.


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