By Riyaz ul Khaliq
ANKARA (AA) – China on Friday hit back at criticism meted out to new national security law on Hong Kong.
Addressing a press briefing in Beijing, Foreign Ministry Zhao Lijian said China has lodged “solemn representations” to “certain” nations after the US, UK, Australia, and Canada criticized China over the new law, according to Global Times, a Chinese newspaper.
“These nations have no qualification or legal basis to cite the Sino-British Joint Declaration to make irresponsible remarks on Hong Kong,” the daily quoted Zhao as saying.
China on Thursday passed a new national security law for Hong Kong set to rein in the semi-autonomous region after months of protests last year.
In a joint statement signed by British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab, Australian Foreign Minister Marise Payne, Canadian Foreign Minister Francois-Philippe Champagne, and US Secretary of State Michael Pompeo expressed “deep concern” on Beijing's move.
“Signatories to this statement reiterate our deep concern regarding Beijing’s decision to impose a national security law in Hong Kong,” the statement said.
“Any attempt to obstruct China's new national security law on Hong Kong is doomed to fail,” Zhao said.
On US President Donald Trump's offer to mediate between India and China on border tensions in the Ladakh area of disputed Jammu and Kashmir region, Zhao said: "China and India are capable of properly resolving the issues through dialogue and consultation."
Trump had offered to "mediate or arbitrate" between the two countries over a raging border dispute in Ladakh where Beijing and New Delhi accuse each other of trespassing.
Meanwhile, urging the US “not to harm” bilateral relations between China and South Korea, Zhao said Beijing opposes the US shifting THAAD missile defense system in South Korea.
According to the Seoul-based Yonhap News Agency, new interceptor missiles were shifted to a US defense base in South Korea in an overnight operation to avoid the reaction of residents who are opposed to the base.