The government recently introduced proposed amendments to our city’s Immigration Ordinance, which would have huge negative impacts on the refugee and asylum seeker population.
As Hong Kong is not a signatory to the UN Refugee Convention, it has created its own process for screening asylum claims. Under this system, the most asylum seekers can hope for is “non-refoulement”, in other words, protection from being sent back to their country of origin. The system is notorious for its disregard of basic human rights, ignorance of the dangerous situations asylum seekers have faced, and its meagre approval rate of 1% (one of the lowest in the developed world).
The new amendments would create additional barriers to asylum seekers receiving a fair hearing and proper consideration of their cases. Today, we stand together with our partner members of the Refugee Concern Network to ask legislators to set up a bills committee at the council meeting today so that the amendments can be properly scrutinised.
Here’s a round-up of the English and Chinese-language media coverage around this proposed amendment and what it means for refugees and asylum seekers in Hong Kong – please share widely with your networks:
- 明報 | 入境擬修例 酷刑聲請須用指定語言 過來人憂不能用母語述苦難 日後更少成功個案
- 明報 | 憂立會反對聲絕 關注組織游說議員設法案委會
- South China Morning Post | Changes to Hong Kong immigration law could re-victimise those fleeing torture and persecution, human rights advocates say
- South China Morning Post | Hong Kong must not fail refugees with immigration law reform
- Hong Kong Free Press | New amendments to Hong Kong’s immigration bill won’t solve its problem with refugees
- 明報 | Virginie Goethals：修入境例恐損難民人權 審核機制須符國際法理
- APRRN | Urgent statement: Hong Kong’s regressive legislative amendments risk undermining protection for refugees and asylum seekers
Refugee Concern Network (RCN) is a network of organisations and individuals, concerned with working collectively to better the lives of Protection Claimants and Refugees in Hong Kong and advocate for their rights. Find out more.