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2014年9月 5日 (金)

香港長官選挙 自治を形骸化する民主派排除

The Yomiuri Shimbun
China’s action against pro-democracy groups scuttling Hong Kong autonomy
香港長官選挙 自治を形骸化する民主派排除

There is reason to believe Hong Kong’s “high degree of autonomy” is on the wane.
 香港の「高度な自治」は、もはや形骸化しつつあるのではないか。

China’s National People’s Congress (NPC) Standing Committee has decided to reform the electoral system for choosing the chief executive of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, a move that sets the stage for changes in the former British colony’s next leadership election in 2017.
 中国の全国人民代表大会(全人代)常務委員会が、2017年の次期香港行政長官選挙に向けた選挙制度改革を決定した。

Hong Kong’s chief executives have been chosen through an indirect election by a committee of 1,200 representatives from various sectors. Pro-China representatives account for a majority of representatives on the electoral commission, making it virtually impossible for any pro-democracy candidate to be elected chief executive.
 行政長官は従来、各界代表で構成する「選挙委員会」の委員1200人による間接選挙で選出されてきた。委員の大半は親中派が占め、民主派の候補者の当選は事実上、不可能だった。

The NPC’s latest decision has ruled that the special administrative region’s leader would be chosen through a popular election, that is, a direct vote by Hong Kong residents. The decision has been made under the Basic Law of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, which serves as the territory’s constitution.
 全人代は今回、憲法に相当する香港基本法に基づき、住民が直接投票する「普通選挙」の導入を認めた。

However, the decision made by the legislature’s powerful Standing Committee will be combined with a plan to create a special nominating committee that would largely comprise pro-China members, requiring all candidates for chief executive to receive support from more than half of the body before being allowed to run for office.
だが、同時に、親中派で固める「指名委員会」を新設し、その半数以上の支持を得ることを立候補の要件とした。

This means anyone critical of the Chinese Communist Party would be barred from running in Hong Kong’s leadership election. The NPC showed through its latest decision a virtually total disregard for calls by Hong Kong pro-democracy groups for significantly relaxing requirements for candidacy.
 中国共産党政権に批判的な人物は出馬すらできまい。立候補要件の大幅緩和を求めた民主派の主張は、ほとんど無視された。

Choosing the Hong Kong leader under such rules does not deserve to be called a popular election at all.
 これでは到底、「普通選挙」の名には値しない。

Following the electoral reform decision, Hong Kong’s Legislative Council will take specific measures to revise and create relevant legislation, including a bill aimed at introducing a popular election system. However, the legislature has no authority to overturn the NPC’s decision.
 今後、具体的な法整備を行う香港議会に全人代決定を覆す権限はない。

If Hong Kong lawmakers vote against the popular election bill, it means the current indirect election system will remain in place. All this clearly shows that the NPC’s decision is an attempt by Chinese President Xi Jinping to prevent the election of a pro-democracy candidate as Hong Kong chief executive.
「普通選挙」法案を否決すれば、間接選挙が続く。民主派の行政長官の誕生を阻止しようとする習近平政権の狙いは明確だ。

Economic driving force

When the former British colony returned to Chinese rule in 1997, China established the special administrative region’s basic law under a policy of “one country, two systems,” pledging to grant Hong Kong a high degree of autonomy. China’s move was intended to maintain the former colony’s capitalist economic system, supported by foreign corporations, so it could use Hong Kong’s economy as a driving force behind its own economic growth.
 香港が1997年に英国から中国に返還された際、中国は、「一国二制度」の名の下に香港基本法を定め、「高度な自治」を約束した。外資系企業が支える香港の資本主義経済を維持し、自国の成長を牽引けんいんさせるのが目的である。

In a sense, the latest election system reform was supposed to serve as a litmus test regarding the fate of Hong Kong’s self-rule.
 今回の選挙制度改革は、自治の行方を占う試金石だった。

However, the Chinese leadership’s decision fails to advance Hong Kong’s autonomy. The latest move is virtually tantamount to declaring Hong Kong’s true ruler is the Communist Party in Beijing.
 だが、習政権の選択は、自治の進展ではなかった。むしろ、香港の真の統治者は北京の共産党政権である、と宣言したに等しい。

The Chinese leadership’s inflexible stance seems to indicate its fears that any progress in advancing the former colony’s autonomy would allow the international community to significantly affect the region’s fate, a development that could make it difficult for China to control the territory.
 自治の進展を許せば、国際社会の影響が強まり、将来的に香港の制御が困難になりかねない。
そんな警戒心が、習政権の強硬姿勢の裏側にあるのだろう。

China’s attempt to rigidly control Hong Kong politically has been evident in many respects recently — not only its electoral system reform decision. In January, the chief editor of a leading Hong Kong newspaper critical of Beijing was abruptly dismissed. More than 500 Hong Kong residents were detained after attending a street demonstration in July.
 香港では最近、選挙制度以外でも、習政権による政治的な“締め付け”が目立っている。中国に批判的な有力紙編集長は突然、解任された。民衆デモに参加した500人以上が拘束された。

Beijing’s high-handed approach is adding to the anger and frustration felt by Hong Kong residents nowadays. Pro-democracy groups are poised to occupy Hong Kong’s Central District, its main business quarter, to protest the NPC’s decision.
 こうした強権的手法に対する香港住民の反発や不満も増幅している。民主派は、中心部の金融街・中環をデモ隊で占拠し、全人代決定に抗議する構えも見せる。

If that actually takes place, it could create turmoil not only in the Hong Kong economy but in Asia’s as a whole. China should understand that it would be hardest hit.
 実行されれば、香港だけでなく、アジア経済にも大きな混乱をもたらしかねない。最も不利益を受けるのは、中国自身だろう。

For its part, Japan needs to closely watch Hong Kong as the situation could deteriorate.
 日本も、不確実性の増した香港情勢を注視する必要がある。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Sept. 3, 2014)Speech

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