Date
16 August 2017
China has fire back at Chris Patten over his comments on the judiciary in Hong Kong. Photo: AFP
China has fire back at Chris Patten over his comments on the judiciary in Hong Kong. Photo: AFP

China fires back at Patten over white paper attack

China’s Foreign Ministry has hit back at a former Hong Kong governor’s attack on Beijing’s relationship with the special administrative region, according to a statement on its website. 

In response to a central government white paper calling on Hong Kong judges to be patriotic, former governor Chris Patten told the Financial Times that judges are independent under Hong Kong law. 

“There shouldn’t be any question of [judges] being instructed or pressed to subordinate their views of due process and what is legal to some other political considerations,” Patten was quoted as saying.

But a spokesman from the Office of Commissioner of the Foreign Ministry in Hong Kong said China will “resolutely” oppose any intervention by external forces in the city’s internal affairs.

The spokesman said political reform has entered a key stage in the city and comments by some individuals on the issue disregard the facts.

The white paper stressed Beijing’s ultimate authority over Hong Kong, prompting the biggest turnout in a decade for annual protests in the city on July 1.

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