Visa Plans For Three Million Hong Kong Citizens- Confirmation From UK PM Boris JohnsonJune 04, 2020 16:04
UK Prime Minister reiterates the visa plans for 3 million Hong Kong citizens. This is only if China presses go forward with the new law which threatens to strip the former British colony of its traditional freedom.
There are already 3,50,000 Hongkongers who hold British National passports. To this there is an additional citizenship of 2.5 million would be eligible to apply.
Currently, British National Overseas passports are allowed with visa free access with a limitation of six months only.
Boris Jonshon said "If China imposes its national security law, the British government will change our immigration rules and allow any holder of these passports from Hong Kong to come to the UK for a renewable period of 12 months and be given further immigration rights, including the right to work, which could place them on a route to citizenship”
"This would amount to one of the biggest changes in our visa system in history. If it proves necessary, the British government will take this step and take it willingly”.
The visa issuing offer for Hongkongers was announced on Tuesday by UK Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab in the House of Common. There Johnson focused that he is hoping things don't have to come to create an “inflaming” situation in Hong Kong with new law.
Over the planned new law, China is now facing criticism from various nations. For the new law many in Hong Kong would fear to live without freedom and they wouldn't also enjoy other parts of China.
Hong Kong emerged with China in 1997 as part of an agreement signed back then and it is the basic law. China’s latest moves are in violation of the agreement in view of the UK.
The National People’s Congress in China, undertook a proposal a month ago for a national security law in Hong Kong.
China's Foreign Minister, State Councillor Wang Yi, subsequently made clear that the legislation will seek to ban "treason, secession, sedition and subversion" and it is expected to be published in full shortly.
The UK PM pointed when he spoke, "If China proceeds, this would be in direct conflict with its obligations under the joint declaration, a legally binding treaty registered with the United Nations. Britain would then have no choice but to uphold our profound ties of history and friendship with the people of Hong Kong"
The foreign ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian repeated China’s stance- the agreement with the UK is known as the Sino-British Joint Declaration and it is essentially null and void.