New Zealand yesterday announced that it would suspend its extradition treaty with Hong Kong.
The move came after China passed sweeping new security legislation for the territory.
New Zealand is the final member of the “Five Eyes” intelligence-sharing alliance to take such action after the Australia, Britain, Canada and the US previously announced similar measures.
New Zealand Minister of Foreign Affairs Winston Peters said that the new legislation goes against commitments China made to the international community.
“New Zealand can no longer trust that Hong Kong’s criminal justice system is sufficiently independent from China,” Peters said.
Moreover, Wellington would treat military and technology exports to Hong Kong in the same way as it treats such exports to China, Peters said.
New Zealand has also updated its travel advice to warn its citizens about the risks they face under the new legislation.
New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said that the nation is following its principles.
“We do have a mature relationship with China,” Ardern said. “There have been occasions where we have taken different positions. This obviously will be one of them.”
China’s embassy in Wellington, led by Ambassador Wu Xi (吳璽), said that New Zealand should stop interfering in China’s affairs.
“The New Zealand government’s decision is a serious violation of international law and basic norms governing international relations,” the embassy said in a statement. “It is a gross interference in China’s internal affairs. The Chinese side has lodged its grave concern and strong opposition.”
Peters said that New Zealand had taken its stance independently of its Five Eyes partners and was not concerned about any effects on exports.
“We are surely entitled as a democracy to make our views known,” he said.
New Zealand remains deeply concerned about the legislation and would monitor the situation in Hong Kong as the legislation is enforced, he said.
Later in the day, China announced that Hong Kong’s extradition treaties with Canada, Australia and Britain would be suspended.
“The wrong action of Canada, Australia and the UK in politicizing judicial cooperation with Hong Kong has seriously hurt the basis of judicial cooperation,” Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesman Wang Wenbin (汪文斌) said at a regular news briefing in Beijing.
“China has decided to suspend extradition treaties between Hong Kong and Canada, Australia and UK, as well as criminal justice cooperation agreements,” Wang said.
The Chinese government reserves the right to take action against New Zealand’s move, he added.
Wang said that the countries were using Hong Kong’s legislation as “an excuse to unilaterally announce the suspension of extradition treaties” with the territory.
Additional reporting by AFP
‘SPIKES’: Rudy Giuliani at a hearing asked about voting data in Pennsylvania, with a witness saying that 570,000 votes they selected were for Biden and 3,200 for Trump US president-elect Joe Biden on Wednesday said that Americans “won’t stand” for attempts to derail the US election outcome, as US President Donald Trump called for results to be overturned. Biden said in his hometown of Wilmington, Delaware, that Americans “have full and fair and free elections, and then we honor the results.” “The people of this nation and the laws of the land won’t stand for anything else,” he said. However, Trump is challenging the results, with lawsuits under way in several states. “We have to turn the election over,” he told a hearing in Pennsylvania. “This election was rigged.” “All we need is
A CAUTIONARY TALE: Bookseller Lam Wing-kee speaks of the danger that his adopted home Taiwan now faces and the ordeal of his detention in China Lam Wing-kee (林榮基) leaned forward in his chair, answering quickly and sharply to issue a warning to the people of his new home, Taiwan. “Be ready now,” Lam said. “We should be more alert as citizens, we should get ready,” the 64-year-old Hong Konger said. “If they can take Hong Kong back, the next place, I feel, is Taiwan.” Late in Taipei at Causeway Bay Books Mark II, on the 10th floor of a nondescript building, Lam, a wiry, gray-haired bookseller, was sitting at his desk with a bemused gaze behind thin oval glasses. The desk was neat, but crowded with books and a
‘POLICE EVERYWHERE’: A law that would criminalize the publication of images of police officers was passed by the National Assembly and awaits Senate approval Violent clashes erupted in Paris on Saturday as tens of thousands took to the streets to protest against new security legislation, with tensions intensified by the police beating and racial abuse of a black man that shocked France. Several fires were started in Paris, sending acrid smoke into the air, as protesters vented their anger against the security law, which would restrict the publication of police officers’ faces. About 46,000 people marched in Paris and 133,000 in total nationwide, the French Ministry of the Interior said. Protest organizers said about 500,000 joined nationwide, including 200,000 in the capital. French President Emmanuel Macron late
Not enough beds and not enough doctors: a skyrocketing COVID-19 caseload is pushing hospitals in the Balkans to the cusp of collapse, in chaotic scenes reminding some medics of the region’s 1990s wars. After nearly a year of keeping outbreaks more or less under control, the nightmare scenario that the Balkans feared from the start of the COVID-19 pandemic is now starting to unfold. In hard-hit Bosnia-Herzegovina, one doctor described the distress of having to juggle the care of multiple patients whose lives were hanging by a thread. “The situation reminds me of the war, and I’m afraid it could get even worse