Declaration of the High Representative on behalf of the EU on the postponement of the Legislative Council elections in Hong Kong

As set out in the Council conclusions of 24 July, the EU is following closely the political situation in Hong Kong and reiterates that it is essential that the Legislative Council elections take place in an environment which is conducive to the exercise of democratic rights and freedoms as enshrined in the Hong Kong’s Basic Law.

The proposed postponement by one year of the elections to the Legislative Council through recourse to emergency powers, would delay the renewal of its democratic mandate and call into question the exercise of the democratic rights and freedoms guaranteed under Hong Kong’s Basic Law.

The recent disqualification of pro-democracy candidates, including sitting lawmakers previously democratically elected by the people of Hong Kong, also weakens Hong Kong’s international reputation as a free and open society. The protection of civil and political rights in Hong Kong is a fundamental part of the “One Country, Two Systems” principle, which the EU supports.

The EU calls on the Hong Kong authorities to reconsider these decisions.