Chris Tang at a press conference in 2020

Hong Kong’s Secretary for Security Chris Tang Ping-keung (鄧炳強) said that the arrests of people who violate the National Security Law (NSL) “will never stop”.

Tang made the remarks at a symposium on the first anniversary since the introduction of the NSL, local media reported on Saturday, August 14.

Among the attendees were Tam Yiu-chung (譚耀宗), member of the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress in Beijing, and Choi Yuk-lin (蔡若蓮), Undersecretary of Hong Kong’s Education Bureau.

Asked if the government has a timetable for the arrest of people who “sowed chaos in Hong Kong” (搞亂香港), Tang said that the prosecution of those who violate the law “will never stop” (永不止息), adding that if people “endanger national security” (危害國家安全), the relevant government departments will enforce the law.

Tang further stated that the NSL has restored stability in Hong Kong, and that the population needs a “correct view of the country” because “only if you have a country you have a home” (有國才有家).

He argued that the Hong Kong government should seize the opportunity provided by the NSL in order to focus on the “development of the economy and people’s livelihood” (經濟及民生發展).

Tam Yiu-chung said that the NSL has restored stability and economic growth and denounced “fake information” (假消息) that he claimed stoked hatred.

“People who are pessimistic about Hong Kong have been discredited,” he said, a reference to the city’s 7.5% second-quarter growth.

After months of protests provoked by an unpopular extradition bill in 2019, the Chinese Communist Party-controlled legislature in Beijing passed the NSL in June 2020.

The law has since been used to crack down on pro-democracy politicians and activists, shut down media organizations and persecute opponents of the regime.

The Chinese Communist Party and its Hong Kong allies have long depicted dissent as “chaos”, and compliance with the government as “stability”.

Chris Tang was among the 11 officials sanctioned by the United States Department of the Treasury in August 2020 for undermining Hong Kong’s autonomy. Tang, then Chief Commissioner of the Hong Kong Police Force and member of the newly formed Committee for Safeguarding National Security, was accused of “coercing, arresting, detaining, or imprisoning individuals under the authority of the National Security Law.”

Read also: The Rise and Decline of Hong Kong – From the British Colonial Era to the Chinese Communist Takeover

Hong Kong identity and Chinese nationalism – A clash of civilizations

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