Harsh Penalties, Vaguely Defined Crimes: Hong Kong’s Security Law Explained
The sweeping new national security law that China imposed on Hong Kong, aimed at stamping out opposition to the ruling Communist Party in the former British colony, is as “devastating” as some critics feared, a human-rights activist said on Wednesday.
Conceived in secrecy and passed on Tuesday without serious public input, the law, which includes 66 articles and more than 7,000 words, sets up a vast security apparatus in Hong Kong and gives Beijing broad powers to crack down on a variety of political crimes, including separatism and collusion.
It is likely to usher in a new era for Hong Kong, experts say, in which civil liberties are tightly constrained and loyalty to the party is paramount. “All in all, this is a takeover of Hong Kong,” said Jerome A. Cohen, a New York…