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Hong Kong

March 29, 1998

Re "Subtle Changes Redefining Citizens' Liberties in Hong Kong, Experts Say," March 9:

It is not true to say that the human rights of Hong Kong people have been eroded since the change of sovereignty last July. The protection of human rights and press freedom under the terms of the Basic Law (Hong Kong's constitution) have been a priority issue for the government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region since its inception.

The political process has continued to function freely, vigorously and openly and the media have robustly exercised their role in reflecting the diverse views of this community.

Political protest is alive and well. There have been more than 1,000 demonstrations since the handover. They have been policed in exactly the same way as they had prior to the change of sovereignty.

Regarding the public debate on the role of the government-funded Radio Television Hong Kong, the editorial independence of the station has been reaffirmed by the chief executive, Tung Chee Hwa.

THOMAS C.Y. CHAN

Director of Information Services

Hong Kong Special

Administrative Region

Government

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