HONG KONG—On Tuesday morning, Beijing’s top legislative body unanimously passed a secretive national security law that specifically applies to Hong Kong, a special autonomous region that until now has enjoyed freedoms that do not exist in most of China.
The new law will go into effect as soon as Wednesday, and targets persons in Hong Kong involved in what the Chinese government calls “secession, subversion, terrorism, and collusion with foreign forces”—charges often slapped on Chinese nationals who express dissent publicly within mainland China.
The secretive security law has Hongkongers spooked. The Chinese Communist Party’s effectiveness controlling its population on the mainland is in setting up situations where people self-censor, and already there are signs that’s happening here. Many signs.