Police wear face masks as they perform the goose-stepping foot drill during an open day to mark National Security Education Day at Hong Kong Police College on Thursday.
Chinese central government’s top official in Hong Kong on Thursday warned foreign forces not to interfere with the “bottom line” of national security in the city.
Luo Huining, director of the Liaison Office of the Central People’s Government in Hong Kong, was speaking at a ceremony to mark the National Security Education Day, the first after the national security law came into force in Hong Kong in mid-2020.
“When it is time, actions must be taken in relation to any external or foreign forces that may interfere Hong Kong affairs or attempts to use Hong Kong as a pawn,” said Luo. “We will propose strong objections and teach them a lesson.”
Thursday marked China’s sixth National Security Education Day. April 15 of each year is designated as the day for raising the public awareness of national security after the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress passed a new national security law in 2015.
Various activities, including lectures, exhibitions and doors open days of disciplined services, were held in the global financial hub.
Authorities marked the event with a police college open house, where police personnel demonstrated the Chinese military’s goose-step march, replacing British-style foot drills from the time Hong Kong was ruled by the UK until the 1997 handover to China.
During his speech, Luo said that everyone in Hong Kong needs to respect the legal responsibility of upholding national security in the city.
“Anyone who wants to go beyond the bottom line of national security, and people’s livelihood, the central authorities will never allow such acts.”
Hong Kong’s Chief Executive Carrie Lam described the 2019 violent protests as “almost like terrorist activities.”
She also called efforts by those advocating Hong Kong’s independence and self-determination a huge safety risk as the goal was to snatch power from the government.
“If this is not stopped, then national sovereignty, security, development interests will be affected. So this is an unprecedented crisis,” she said. “The national security law in Hong Kong immediately restored stability in society.”
To ensure national security, Hong Kong’s administration must be firmly held in the hands of patriots, according to Lam, who added that the government has introduced the bill on improving the local electoral system to the legislature.
In schools, students were encouraged to take part in activities including national security mosaic walls with photos of students’ faces. Authorities also encouraged schools to hold flag raising ceremonies and play the national anthem.