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【全文】「戴啟思名單」 回應人大常委一地兩檢決定:unconvincing and unsatisfactory

2017/12/27 — 21:25

【文:大律師公會候選「戴啟思名單」】

戴啟思團隊 - 有關"一地兩檢"的立場

1. 香港特別行政區政府自2010年,花了超過七年時間與內地相關部門研究及討論廣深港高速鐵路的海關、出入境及檢疫安排。對於有關當局經過七年的研討後仍未能為現行安排的法律基礎提供令人滿意的解釋,我們深感失望。全國人大常委會今日就該安排的法律基礎所作出的解釋,更是毫無說服力和令人不滿。

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2. 2017年7月25日,政府提出「一地兩檢」的安排:  即內地法律及司法管轄權將適用於香港兩個地區,包括西九龍總站的部份範圍及高鐵車廂。在此範圍內,大部分的香港法律,將會被內地法律,包括大陸的刑事法所取代。

3. 舉例來說,任何人在內地干犯尋釁滋事罪,最高可被判處五年監禁、刑事拘留或管制(《中華人民共和國刑事法》第293條)。但由於香港的刑事法中並沒有相同的罪行,引入內地刑事法會使公眾擔心在西九龍總站示威會遭受內地法律的檢控和刑罰。同樣,任何市民在西九龍總站的內地口岸區干犯刑事罪行,將按內地法律而非本港法律審訊及處罰。香港警察在西九龍總站該範圍沒有執法權,而香港法庭亦在該範圍沒有司法管轄權。

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4.  若「一地兩檢」安排要於香港落實,必須符合《基本法》。《基本法》不衹是香港的「小憲法」,更是一部全國性法律。

5. 《基本法》第十八條訂明,在香港特別行政區實行的法律為《基本法》、1997年香港回歸前原有的法律和香港立法機關制定的法律。第十八條清楚規定,除了《基本法》附件三中所載明的全國性法律外,其他全國性法律不在香港特別行政區實施。而能列入附件三的法律只「限於有關國防、外交和其他按本法規定不屬於香港特別行政區自治範圍的法律。」第十八條的意思十分清晰:香港實行的法律是香港法律。除了載於附件三的全國性法律以外,其他全國性法律不得在香港實施。有關《基本法》第十八條容許內地法律在香港特別行政區的部份範圍實施的說法,毫無理據。 

6. 此外,《基本法》授予香港特別行政區獨立司法權,包括終審權,以及本港法院擁有對香港特別行政區內所有的案件的審判權(《基本法》第十九(一)及(二)條)。剝奪香港法院的審判權必定違反了《基本法》第十九條。

7. 《基本法》第二十二條訂明中央人民政府所屬各部門、各省、自治區、直轄市均不得干預香港特別行政區的事務。即使內地部門徵得香港特別行政區政府同意在香港設立辦事處,內地人員亦須遵守香港法律。

8. 人大常委會的討論文件中引用《基本法》第二、七、一百一十八和一百一十九條,指為「一地兩檢」安排符合《基本法》的法律基礎。《基本法》第二條和第七條為一般性條文,指出香港特區實行高度自治以及香港政府管理屬於國有資產的土地資源。《基本法》第一百一十八和一百一十九條屬於第五章下,指香港政府應提供環境和制定政策以促進和鼓勵經濟活動。

9. 上述條文明顯不能作為支持「一地兩檢」安排中《基本法》在香港部份範圍不適用的依據。這些一般性條文不能凌駕第十八條、第十九條及第二十二條等明確具體的條文。如此解讀《基本法》不單斷章取義,更粗暴損害了香港賴以捍衛一國兩制的《基本法》的莊嚴性。

10. 再者,香港政府在《基本法》下必須履行高度自治的責任。香港政府自行放棄部分土地,使《基本法》及大部分香港法例不適用於該範圍,違反了其憲制責任。

11. 同樣,如此粗暴曲解《基本法》,亦剝奪了香港法院根據第十九條,對香港特別行政區內所有案件行使獨立司法權的憲制責任。

12. 事實上,根據香港政府向立法會提交的文件,政府亦同意「一地兩檢」的安排(如非透過《基本法》第二十條獲取額外的權力)會違反《基本法》的多項條文,尤其是第十八條,而據此將全國性法律只應用在香港部份地區亦是不恰當的。將全國性法律,包括內地刑事法,直接應用於香港明顯違反《基本法》第十八條。

13. 「一地兩檢」的安排必須建基於客觀的法律基礎。香港政府向立法會提交的文件中曾提議透過第二十條獲取額外的權力,但即使全國人大常委會亦不認為這是「一地兩檢」安排合法化的合適方法。

14. 我們必須指出,由全國人大頒布的《基本法》是一項全國性法律;不但香港政府,所有國家部門亦必須遵守。目前的「一地兩檢」安排直接違反《基本法》,一旦實施將會嚴重損害香港的法治。法治是保障香港經濟環境的重要元素。「一地兩檢」的安排必定會打擊公眾,尤其是投資者(不論在本地、全國或國際層面),對中央及香港政府維護法治的信心。

15. 我們並不是反對高鐵;但我們強調的是任何相關安排必須符合《基本法》。這是法治的基本要求。《基本法》的意思必須客觀詮釋。第十八、十九及二十二條的效力十分清晰:全國性的法律(除列於附件三外)並不得在香港任何部分實施,而所有在本港的內地機構和人員必須遵守香港的法律。如為方便及便捷,肆意扭曲及曲解《基本法》和其條文的意思,香港的法治將無可避免受到打擊及損害。

戴啟思資深大律師 
駱應淦資深大律師
陳文敏名譽資深大律師
沈士文大律師
陳偉彥大律師
石書銘大律師

PHILIP DYKES' LIST - POSITION ON CO-LOCATION ARRANGEMENT(相關報道連結按此

1. The Hong Kong government took over 7 years since 2010 to study and discuss with Mainland authorities on the customs, immigration and quarantine arrangements for the High Speed Rail. We are disappointed that after 7 years of study, there is still no satisfactory explanation of the legal basis for the current arrangement. The explanation of the NPCSC today on the legal basis is unconvincing and unsatisfactory.

2. On 25 July 2017, the Government proposed the “co-location arrangement” whereby the laws and jurisdiction of the Mainland would apply to two areas of Hong Kong, an area in the West Kowloon Station and the train compartments of the High Speed Rail. The majority of Hong Kong laws will be replaced by Mainland laws, including Mainland criminal law, in those areas.

3. By way of illustration, it is a criminal offence of undermining public order (尋釁滋事罪) in Mainland China which can be sentenced to not more than five years of fixed-term imprisonment, criminal detention or control (Section 293 of the Criminal Law of the People’s Republic of China). There is no comparable criminal sanction in Hong Kong and the introduction of Mainland Criminal Law worries the public about whether the oppositions in Hong Kong will face a similar threat of criminal punishment to demonstrate in the West Kowloon Station. Similarly, if someone commits a criminal offence at the Mainland Port in the West Kowloon Station, they are subject to be tried and punished by Mainland law, and not Hong Kong law. Hong Kong police has no enforcement power, and Hong Kong courts have no jurisdiction over that part of West Kowloon.

4. If the co-location arrangement is to be implemented in Hong Kong, it must comply with the Basic Law, which is not only the mini-constitution of Hong Kong but also a piece of national law.

5. According to Article 18 of the Basic Law, the laws of Hong Kong shall be the Basic Law, the laws in force in Hong Kong before the handover in 1997 and the laws enacted by Legco laws shall apply to the whole HKSAR. It expressly mandates that no national laws shall be applied in the HKSAR except by inclusion in Annex III which “shall be confined to those relating to defence and foreign affairs and other matters outside the limits of the autonomy of the HKSAR. The effect of Article 18 is very clear: the laws that apply to Hong Kong is Hong Kong law. National laws shall not apply to Hong Kong, save those included in Annex III. There is no justification to say that Article 18 allows Mainland laws to apply to Hong Kong if they only applied to a certain part of the HKSAR.

6. Also according to the provisions of the Basic Law, the HKSAR is vested with independent judicial power, including that of final adjudication, and the courts of the HKSAR have jurisdiction over all cases in the HKSAR (Article 19(1) and (2) of the Basic Law). Taking away the jurisdiction of HKSAR courts from a part of Hong Kong will certainly be a breach of Article 19.

7. Article 22 expressly provides that no department of the Central People’s Government or province/autonomous region/municipality may interfere with the affairs of Hong Kong. Even if Mainland departments set up offices in Hong Kong with the consent of the HKSAR Government, the Mainland officials must abide by the laws of Hong Kong.

8. Articles 2, 7, 118 and 119 of the Basic Law were cited by the NPCSC in the explanation notes to provide the legal basis for compliance of the co-location arrangement with the Basic Law. Articles 2 and 7 are general provisions that the HKSAR is to exercise a high degree of autonomy and the HK Government to manage land resources which are state properties. Articles 118 and 119 are under Chapter V of the Basic Law which provide that the HKSAR Government shall provide environment and formulate policies for promoting and encouraging economic activities.

9. It is obvious that such articles do not provide the basis for Basic Law to be disapplied in certain parts of Hong Kong as the co-location arrangement so proposes. Such general articles cannot have the effect of overriding the specific and clear provisions, e.g. articles 18, 19 and 22. Such reading of the Basic Law would be stripping different articles out of context and do violence to the solemnity of the Basic Law which should operate to safeguard the principle of “one country two systems” in Hong Kong.

10. Further, the exercise of high degree of autonomy is a mandatory requirement of the Hong Kong government under the Basic Law. The Hong Kong government would have abrogated its constitutional duties by surrendering a part of Hong Kong such that the Basic Law and most Hong Kong laws do not apply.

11. Likewise, the Hong Kong courts which are bound to exercise its independent judicial power over all cases within the HKSAR pursuant to Article 19 would be stripped off of their constitutional functions by such violent construction of the Basic Law.

12. In fact, according to the Hong Kong government’s papers to Legco, it agrees that the co-location arrangement (without obtaining additional powers under Article 20) would contravene various provisions of the Basic Law, in particular, Article 18, and it is not appropriate to adopt national laws to only a particular area of Hong Kong. It is clear that applying the national laws, including Mainland Criminal Law directly in Hong Kong will be a breach of Article 18.

13. There must be objective legal basis for the co-location arrangement. The Hong Kong government in its paper to Legco proposed to acquire additional powers by virtue of Article 20. However, even the NPCSC do not consider it appropriate to “legalize” the co-location arrangement by granting additional powers to HKSAR by virtue of Article 20.

14. We must point out that the Basic Law, being promulgated by the NPC, is a piece of national law and should be complied with, not only by the Hong Kong government, but also by all state departments. The current co-location arrangement is in direct contravention of the Basic Law and if implemented would substantially damage the rule of law in Hong Kong. It would undoubtedly undermine confidence of the public, in particular, of investors whether local, national or international, in the state and Hong Kong government’s willingness to uphold the rule of law which is essential to protect the economic environment of Hong Kong.

15. We do not oppose the introduction of High Speed Rail. What we say is that this has to be done in accordance with the Basic Law. This is the basic requirement of the rule of law. The meaning of the Basic Law has to be ascertained objectively. The effect of Articles 18, 19 and 22 are clear: national laws shall not apply to any part of Hong Kong (save through Annex III), and any Mainland organization or personnel in Hong Kong is subject to Hong Kong law. The rule of law will be threatened and undermined if the clear meaning of the Basic Law can be twisted and the provisions of the Basic Law can be interpreted according to expediency and convenience.

 

27 December 2017

Philip Dykes SC
Lawrence Lok SC
Johannes Chan SC (Hon)
Erik Shum
Joe Chan
Randy Shek

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