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New harbourfront space opens

The Development Bureau announced that the Pierside Precinct near Wan Chai Ferry Pier further opened today, providing a nostalgic harbourfront leisure space with a panoramic view of Victoria Harbour for the public.   Being the 12th harbourfront leisure space that opened since October last year, the newly opened area is located to the east of the ferry pier on a harbour site reclaimed for the construction of the Central-Wan Chai Bypass.   The bureau said under the incremental approach, a 180-metre-long promenade of the precinct opened earlier in March, followed by the opening of a further 80m in October.   With an area of about 4,600 sq m, the newly opened part has almost doubled the precinct's original space.   In contrast to the colourful cartoon style adopted at other harbourfront sites opened earlier in Western District and Wan Chai, the precinct mainly comprises simple fair-faced concrete and wooden structures.   It features a stylish touch with its clear and rectiline

Govt rejects foreign statements

The Government today said it strongly rejects and condemns individual foreign politicians' biased and groundless statements on so-called issues relating to human rights, freedoms and political participation in Hong Kong.   It said the statements issued by individual foreign politicians, including those from the US, the UK, the European Union and Australia, are flagrant and unsubstantiated attacks on Hong Kong and provocative interventions of China's internal affairs.   In its response, the Government noted that the oath-taking of district council members was conducted in full compliance with the Basic Law.   It strongly deplored and condemned the smearing and unfair comments by foreign governments of this legitimate oath-taking process and the rightful decisions to disqualify some district councillors whose oaths are invalid for failing to meet the legal requirement to uphold the Basic Law and bear allegiance to the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region.   The Government also pointed out that the implementation of the National Security Law and the improved electoral system are the turning points for Hong Kong.   With stability restored, Hong Kong has got back on the right track of "one country, two systems". Citizens can once again go about their normal lives and are looking ahead with renewed confidence in the future.   In addition, the city's financial market has remained steady since the implementation of the National Security Law.   The banking sector is as robust as ever, financial services remain promising and development opportunities, both in Hong Kong and on the Mainland, continue to open up.   The Government stressed that the National Security Law has been implemented in full accordance with national and local laws.   The National Security Law states that freedoms of speech, of the press and of publication are among rights and freedoms explicitly protected in accordance with Hong Kong laws.   It also ensures the resolute, full and faithful implementation of the "one country, two systems" policy that Hong Kong's high degree of autonomy will not be changed and the legitimate rights and freedoms enjoyed by Hong Kong people under the Basic Law will not be undermined.   Any claims of politically motivated prosecutions are factually incorrect, nonsensical and misguided, the Government noted.   It reiterated that all prosecutorial decisions are based on admissible evidence and applicable laws. Cases have never been or will never be handled any differently owing to the political beliefs or background of the people involved.   The Government said: “Following a long period of acrimonious political stalemate, the operation of our Legislative Council has returned to normal after the implementation of electoral reforms.   “People from all walks of life with different opinions about government policies are able to participate in the political system, as long as they uphold the Basic Law and swear allegiance to the Hong Kong SAR.   “People are free to vote and stand for election, regardless of their political affiliation.   “We urge foreign politicians to stop their blatant interference in Hong Kong matters which are the internal affairs of the People's Republic of China.”
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