8 days before Anti-Terror Bill lapses into law: Standing in solidarity with Hong Kong

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Last 8 days before Anti-Terror Bill lapses into law, Filipino youth stands with the Hongkong people in our united fight against each other’s state terrorism

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With eight (8) days before the Anti-Terror Bill lapses into law, Kabataan Party-list seeks to highlight the new national security law passed by China, its implications to the people of Hong Kong, and its similarities to the Anti-Terror Bill in our own country.

The national security law for Hong Kong was railroaded by the Chinese Government as a response to the massive waves of protests in Hong Kong in recent years. Said law seeks to punish the crimes of secession, subversion, terrorism and collusion with foreign countries. The intent of said law is to prevent Hong Kong from separating from China with interference from foreign states and to outlaw dissent amongst the populace of Hong Kong. Said law allows authorities to surveil and wiretap persons and groups suspected as threats to national security and applies to both permanent and non-permanent residents of Hong Kong. There will also be a national security agency within Hong Kong, who are not bound by local laws when enforcing their duties by law. The law also allows China to take over prosecution of cases involving this law in certain cases. This law even intends to punish any person who takes part in “secessionist activities,” as organizers or participants, even when violence is not used.

This law takes away powers and jurisdiction of the Hong Kong government in maintaining its own peace and order. China is completely taking control of Hong Kong, once again meddling its affairs with citizens who do not even recognize its rule. The law, which was passed in secrecy, ultimately undermined the autonomy enjoyed by the Hong Kong government and the rights and liberty of the people. In other words, this law punishes everyone and anyone who is vocal and critical against Chinese aggression.

In our own country, as the Anti-Terror Bill is looming upon us, its similarities to the national security law are present. Both laws basically seek to silence dissent and to criminalize activism against the government. Both laws seek to punish leaders and participants in movements acting on criticism against the government, and brand such movements as “terrorist.” Both laws have created a chilling effect of fear in the Philippines and Hong Kong respectively, attempting to push people away from speaking against government action. Both laws impose excessive and unjust penalties for those who violate them. And most importantly, both loads ultimately violate the principles and policies of which a democracy stands for and replace it with tyranny and dictatorship.

With this, Kabataan Party-list takes a stand with the people of Hong Kong and condemn this new legislation which seeks to silence dissent and criticism. We urge that the Chinese and Hong Kong governments re-evaluate the merits of these laws in order to prevent its abuse against the rights and liberties which the people of Hong Kong have had for years.

We also call on the Duterte Administration to heed to the call of the people and to junk the Anti-Terror Bill. With just eight days left before it lapses into law, there is still time to veto this bill.

Finally, we call on the youth and people to stand together in the face of fear and tyranny. As this government seeks to take away our democratic rights and our civil liberties, let our stance remain clear that we condemn all forms of state fascism invading our life, liberty, and security.###


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