Tag Archives: China


LCQ1: Wartime relics

     Following is a question by the Hon Lau Chi-pang and a reply by the Secretary for Development, Ms Bernadette Linn, in the Legislative Council today (June 7):

     It has been reported that the State President has indicated that "archaeological relics and historic heritage are witnesses to history that have to be protected and utilised well". There are views that from the Six-Day War in 1899 where villagers in the New Territories resisted the British in defence of their territories, to the Battle of Hong Kong in 1941 where the Hong Kong defence forces staged a concerted and united action of resistance against Japanese aggression, Hong Kong boasts an abundant history of the wars of resistance, and the relevant wartime relics even constitute excellent teaching materials for national education. However, the current state of preservation of wartime relics in Hong Kong varies greatly, which has aroused concerns. In this connection, will the Government inform this Council:

(1) of the current number of wartime relics in Hong Kong, and whether the Government has compiled a list of wartime relics; if it has, whether it can make available the list concerned; if it has not, whether it will compile such a list in the future;

(2) whether the Government has devised preservation proposals for the wartime relics in Hong Kong; if so, of the specific proposals; if not, whether it will devise such proposals in the future; and

(3) given the Government's commitment to promoting students' experiential learning beyond the classroom and integrating such learning with values education in recent years, whether the Government has plans to incorporate the wartime relics in Hong Kong into the experiential learning for the subjects of Citizenship and Social Development as well as Chinese History; if so, of the relevant plans; if not, the reasons for that?



     The work on wartime relics in Hong Kong involves different purviews including the conservation of declared monuments and historic buildings, education on Hong Kong history and promotion of heritage and culture, etc. After consultation with the relevant policy bureaux, the replies of the Development Bureau to the three parts of the question are as follows:

(1) Based on the preliminary findings of the Antiquities and Monuments Office (AMO), there are 76 items on the lists of declared monuments, graded historic buildings and items pending grading assessment that are related to Six-Day War in 1899, Battle of Hong Kong in December 1941 and the Hong Kong Independent Battalion of the Dongjiang Column (Independent Battalion of Dongjiang Column). Examples include Tat Tak Communal Hall in Ping Shan (Declared Monument) and Kat Hing Wai (Grade 1) which were connected to the Six-Day War; School House of St Stephen's College in Stanley (Declared Monument) and Wong Nai Chung Gap Military Site (Grade 2) that were related to the Battle of Hong Kong; Rosary Mission Centre in Wong Mo Ying, Sai Kung (Grade 2) and Law Uk, Shek Chung Au in Sha Tau Kok (Grade 3) that were relevant to the Independent Battalion of Dongjiang Column. The list of the 76 items concerned is at Annex of this reply. 

     Apart from wartime relics, two major memorial facilities of the War of Resistance in Hong Kong, namely the Cenotaph for Martyrs in Wu Kau Tang, North District and the Memorial Monuments for Sai Kung Martyrs During World War II in Tsam Chuk Wan, Sai Kung, have been incorporated into the List of State Facilities and Sites Marking the War of Resistance Against Japanese Aggression. 

     On the other hand, Hong Kong Museum of History (HKMH) and Hong Kong Museum of Coastal Defence (HKMCD) under the Leisure and Cultural Services Department have been featuring the history of the War of Resistance against Japanese Aggression in their permanent exhibition galleries for long-term display and stage thematic exhibitions relating to the War of Resistance from time to time. Currently, HKMH is updating its permanent exhibitions to further enhance its presentation of the history of Japanese invasion of China, Japanese attack on Hong Kong, the Battle of Hong Kong and the Independent Battalion of Dongjiang Column, etc. The revamped exhibition of HKMCD, with an enhanced focus on the history of the War of Resistance and the Independent Battalion of Dongjiang Column, has been reopened on November 24, 2022. 

(2) If the wartime relics are declared monuments and graded historic buildings, the AMO will engage specialists to conduct site inspections at regular intervals and maintain records of and monitor the general conditions of these historic items. The AMO will assist the management departments or private owners concerned in the restoration and repair works of the historic buildings, where necessary. For privately-owned historic buildings, the Commissioner for Heritage's Office of the Development Bureau will approach the owners of private historic buildings and encourage them to apply for subsidies under the Financial Assistance for Maintenance Scheme on Built Heritage to upkeep their historic buildings.

     The Government has also installed information plaques at the graded historic buildings including those related to the War of Resistance, such as Wong Nai Chung Gap Military Site, Pinewood Battery in Lung Fu Shan, Fortifications at Devil's Peak in Sai Kung, Chung Hom Kok Battery in Stanley, etc, to introduce their history to the public.

     To properly protect graded historic buildings and new items pending grading assessment from impacts of works, relevant works departments are required under the existing mechanism to assess whether their projects will affect those built heritage. If affirmative, Heritage Impact Assessment is required and mitigation measures should be devised. To protect built heritage under private ownership, the Government has established an internal mechanism to monitor any plan to demolish or alter privately-owned heritage, to take timely follow-up actions with the owners concerned and explore conservation options.

(3) According to the information provided by the Education Bureau, Citizenship and Social Development (CS), Chinese History and History of secondary school curriculum both contain rich elements of experiential learning. The theme of "Hong Kong under 'one country, two systems'" in CS involves the preservation of wartime relics in Hong Kong and the indomitable spirit of the Chinese nation in the War of Resistance. The Education Bureau encourages schools to arrange for students to visit wartime relics to know about the current conservation situation and learn about the deeds of anti-Japanese martyrs. Regarding the subjects of Chinese History and History, the Education Bureau has been working on the provision of teacher training programmes and the development of teaching resources including visits to wartime relics in Hong Kong. Besides, the Education Bureau has organised a series of programmes on the teaching of the History of the War of Resistance against Japanese Aggression (Note), which included inviting historians to conduct teacher professional training courses related to the relics of resistance against Japanese aggression, such as organising seminars and field visits in commemoration of the 80th anniversary of the founding of the Independent Battalion of Dongjiang Column; and also arranged for teachers and students to visit Stanley Military Cemetery, Sai Wan War Cemetery, and the HKMCD and its historical trail converted from forts. The Education Bureau will continue to organise or co-organise relevant activities with tertiary institutions, museums and organisations.

     It is of great importance to introduce the stories of the War of Resistance and promote the related history and culture to the members of the public, which helps to enhance the cultivation of patriotic sentiments and national identity. The Deputy Chief Secretary for Administration will set up an Inter-departmental Task Force comprising the Development Bureau, Culture, Sports and Tourism Bureau, Home and Youth Affairs Bureau and Education Bureau to co-ordinate the relevant efforts of the policy bureaux, and actively explore working closely with all sectors of community to preserve and make good use of the wartime relics and historical records with a view to enhancing the effectiveness in promoting the history of the War of Resistance and fostering citizens' sense of national identity.

Note: Circular memorandum No. 99/2022 "Teaching the History of the War of Resistance against Japanese Aggression: Teacher Seminars cum Field Visits Series, Teaching Support Programme and Learning and Teaching Resources", and circular memorandum No. 194/2022 "Teacher Seminars cum Field Visits Series and Learning and Teaching Resources to support Non-Chinese Speaking students in understanding the War of Resistance against Japanese Aggression and the Battle of Hong Kong".

Illegal worker jailed

     A Chinese illegal worker was jailed by the Shatin Magistrates’ Courts on June 6.

     During operation “Twilight” conducted on April 24, Immigration Department (ImmD) investigators raided a restaurant in Wan Chai. A Chinese female, aged 50, was arrested while working as a dishwashing worker. An employer suspected of employing the illegal worker was also arrested and the investigation is ongoing.

     The illegal worker was charged at the Shatin Magistrates’ Courts on June 6 with taking employment after landing in Hong Kong unlawfully and remaining in Hong Kong without the authority of the Director of Immigration. She pleaded guilty to the charge and was sentenced to 15 months’ imprisonment. Meanwhile, she was also charged with one count of remaining in Hong Kong without the authority of the Director after landing in Hong Kong unlawfully and one count of possessing a forged Hong Kong identity card. She was sentenced to 15 and 16 months’ imprisonment for each count. All sentences are to run concurrently, making for a total of 16 months’ imprisonment.
     The ImmD spokesman warned that, as stipulated in section 38AA of the Immigration Ordinance, an illegal immigrant, a person who is the subject of a removal order or a deportation order, an overstayer or a person who was refused permission to land is prohibited from taking any employment, whether paid or unpaid, or establishing or joining in any business. Offenders are liable upon conviction to a maximum fine of $50,000 and up to three years’ imprisonment. Under the prevailing laws, it is an offence to use or possess a forged Hong Kong identity card or a Hong Kong identity card related to another person. Offenders are liable to prosecution and upon conviction face a maximum penalty of a $100,000 fine and up to 10 years’ imprisonment.

     The spokesman reiterated that it is a serious offence to employ people who are not lawfully employable. Under the Immigration Ordinance, the maximum penalty for an employer employing a person who is not lawfully employable, i.e. an illegal immigrant, a person who is the subject of a removal order or a deportation order, an overstayer or a person who was refused permission to land, has been significantly increased from a fine of $350,000 and three years’ imprisonment to a fine of $500,000 and 10 years’ imprisonment to reflect the gravity of such offences. The director, manager, secretary, partner, etc, of the company concerned may also bear criminal liability. The High Court has laid down sentencing guidelines that the employer of an illegal worker should be given an immediate custodial sentence.

     According to the court sentencing, employers must take all practicable steps to determine whether a person is lawfully employable prior to employment. Apart from inspecting a prospective employee’s identity card, the employer has the explicit duty to make enquiries regarding the person and ensure that the answers would not cast any reasonable doubt concerning the lawful employability of the person. The court will not accept failure to do so as a defence in proceedings. It is also an offence if an employer fails to inspect the job seeker’s valid travel document if the job seeker does not have a Hong Kong permanent identity card. Offenders are liable upon conviction to a maximum fine of $150,000 and to imprisonment for one year. In that connection, the spokesman would like to remind all employers not to defy the law by employing illegal workers. The ImmD will continue to take resolute enforcement action to combat such offences.
     Under the existing mechanism, the ImmD will, as a standard procedure, conduct an initial screening of vulnerable persons, including illegal workers, illegal immigrants, sex workers and foreign domestic helpers, who are arrested during any operation with a view to ascertaining whether they are trafficking in persons (TIP) victims. When any TIP indicator is revealed in the initial screening, the officers will conduct a full debriefing and identification by using a standardised checklist to ascertain the presence of TIP elements, such as threats and coercion in the recruitment phase and the nature of exploitation. Identified TIP victims will be provided with various forms of support and assistance, including urgent intervention, medical services, counselling, shelter, temporary accommodation and other supporting services. The ImmD calls on TIP victims to report crimes to the relevant departments immediately. read more

CHP investigates outbreak of acute gastroenteritis at kindergarten in Tseung Kwan O

     The Centre for Health Protection (CHP) of the Department of Health (DH) is today (June 7) investigating an outbreak of acute gastroenteritis (AGE) at a kindergarten in Tseung Kwan O, and hence reminded the public and management of institutions to maintain personal and environmental hygiene against AGE.

     The outbreak involves 29 pupils, comprising 12 boys and 17 girls aged 4 to 6, and four staff members. They developed vomiting, diarrhoea and abdominal pain since June 5. Eleven of the affected pupils sought medical attention, three of whom required hospitalisation and one of them has been discharged after management. All patients are in stable condition.

     According to the CHP’s epidemiological investigation, two of the students in the outbreak had first vomited at school on June 5. Other students and staff then developed symptoms from June 6 to 7. The outbreak has a higher chance of person-to-person transmission or environmental contamination, while the chance of involving food poisoning is relatively low.
     Officers of the CHP have conducted a site visit and provided health advice to the staff of the kindergarten concerning proper and thorough disinfection, proper disposal of vomitus, and personal and environmental hygiene. The kindergarten has been put under medical surveillance.

     Investigations are ongoing.

     A spokesman for the CHP reminded that alcohol-based handrub should not substitute hand hygiene with liquid soap and water, as alcohol does not effectively kill some viruses frequently causing AGE, e.g. norovirus. Members of the public are advised to take heed of the following preventive measures against gastroenteritis:

  • Ensure proper personal hygiene;
  • Wash hands thoroughly before handling food and eating, after using the toilet or after changing diapers;
  • Wear gloves when disposing of vomitus or faecal matter, and wash hands afterwards;
  • Clean and disinfect contaminated areas or items promptly and thoroughly with diluted household bleach (by adding one part of bleach containing 5.25 per cent sodium hypochlorite to 49 parts of water). Wash hands thoroughly afterwards;
  • Maintain good indoor ventilation;
  • Pay attention to food hygiene;
  • Use separate utensils to handle raw and cooked food;
  • Avoid food that is not thoroughly cooked;
  • Drink boiled water; and
  • Do not patronise unlicensed food premises or food stalls.

     â€‹The public may visit the CHP’s website (www.chp.gov.hk) or call the DH’s Health Education Infoline (2833 0111) for more information. read more

FSD and Hong Kong Polytechnic University sign MoU to nurture young generations (with photos)

     The Fire Services Department (FSD) and the Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) today (June 7) to establish a collaborative partnership in jointly organising a training course on fundamentals of emergency care and critical response by the Fire and Ambulance Services Academy (FASA) and the School of Nursing of PolyU. 

     The course will equip students with the skills and knowledge of the application of cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and automated external defibrillators (AEDs), as well as fire safety measures and emergency evacuation procedures. The aim is to further strengthen the awareness of community emergency preparedness in a bid to enhance the efficiency of life-saving treatments.

     The FSD has long been formulating and implementing strategies on community emergency preparedness while the School of Nursing at PolyU has been pursuing academic excellence of practical value in nursing and healthcare services. The collaboration will help the FSD to further promote the “three basic skills on emergency preparedness” (namely Extinguish and Prevent Fire, Self-help and Help Others, and Escape and Evacuate) in the community and also foster the culture of “self-help and help others” in the wider community.

     Witnessed by the Director of Fire Services, Mr Andy Yeung, and the Dean of the Faculty of Health and Social Sciences of PolyU, Professor David Shum, the MoU was signed by the Commandant of the FASA, Mr Yiu Men-yeung, and the Interim Head of the School of Nursing of PolyU, Professor Engle Angela Chan.

     Mr Yeung hoped that the training course would enhance students’ competence and confidence in saving patients from cardiac arrest, and strengthen the support for local patients with cardiac arrest to receive timely rescue in the community so as to increase their chances of survival. The MoU also signifies the sustainable co-operation of both sides in providing diversified learning opportunities in different aspects to nurture more outstanding young generations in Hong Kong.

     Professor Shum thanked the FSD for its unwavering support for the training course. He said that the collaborative course will be included as a credit-bearing course in the curriculum of General Studies for all PolyU students in meeting the needs of the community. He wished that the course would also enhance students’ vigilance and problem-solving abilities and cultivate a spirit of mutual assistance and care among them.

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Fourth Anti-Money Laundering Regtech Lab: supporting agile, co-ordinated and strategic response to digital fraud and financial crime (with photos)

The following is issued on behalf of the Hong Kong Monetary Authority:

     The Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) and Cyberport co-hosted the fourth Anti-Money Laundering Regtech Lab (AMLab 4) today (June 7), with support from Deloitte. The AMLab series helps enhance capabilities in the use of data and technology to respond effectively to the heightened threat of digital fraud and related money laundering, which increasingly threatens the integrity of our banking system as well as undermines trust in digital financial services.

     AMLab 4 brings together retail banks, technology companies and industry experts to innovate and develop a sector-wide approach to real-time fraud monitoring, to help customers identify and take action to prevent fraud. For the first time, major Stored Value Facility (SVF) licensees also join the event. The following capabilities are explored:

  1. proactive detection of money mule accounts to increase the early identification capacity and alerts for potential victims of deception to protect against losses;
  2. promoting industry-wide adoption of AML Regtech tools to increase effectiveness of real-time fraud monitoring across the board, noting that about 60 per cent of retail banks are now using network analytics, more than twice as many as three years ago; and
  3. best practices in the use of data and a more co-ordinated approach across fraud and money laundering risk disciplines, noting that about 80 per cent of retail banks are now ingesting non-traditional data such as digital footprints and customer behaviour into monitoring systems.

     Also featured is Regtech Connect, a collaborative platform in which technology companies demonstrate and discuss relevant Regtech tools and solutions with participating banks and SVF licensees.

     Sharing the common purpose of “gatekeeping” the banking system from being exploited for fraud and financial crime, the HKMA and banks are committed to innovating their response, including adoption of a consistent, co-ordinated approach to real-time fraud monitoring by all retail banks before the end of September 2023. The outcomes will be tracked against the HKMA’s 2023 work priorities (Note 1) as well as the five joint anti-deception initiatives announced recently by the HKMA and Hong Kong Police Force (HKPF) (Note 2). The HKMA will continue to prioritise working with banks and all stakeholders towards an ecosystem response to fraud and financial crime risk.

About HKMA

     The HKMA is Hong Kong’s central banking institution. The HKMA’s main functions are: (i) maintaining currency stability within the framework of the Linked Exchange Rate System; (ii) promoting the stability and integrity of the financial system, including the banking system; (iii) helping to maintain Hong Kong’s status as an international financial centre, including the maintenance and development of Hong Kong’s financial infrastructure; and (iv) managing the Exchange Fund.

About Cyberport

     Cyberport is Hong Kong’s digital technology flagship and incubator for entrepreneurship with over 1 900 members including over 800 onsite and close to 1 100 offsite start-ups and technology companies. It is managed by Hong Kong Cyberport Management Company Limited, wholly owned by the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Government. With a vision to be the hub for digital technology, thereby creating a new economic driver for Hong Kong, Cyberport is committed to nurturing a vibrant tech ecosystem by cultivating talent, promoting entrepreneurship among youth, supporting start-ups, fostering industry development by promoting strategic collaboration with local and international partners, and integrating new and traditional economies by accelerating digital transformation in public and private sectors. 

     For more information, please visit www.cyberport.hk.

Note 1: One of the HKMA’s key work priorities in 2023 for the banking sector is to detect, deter and disrupt money laundering, fraud and financial crime. (www.hkma.gov.hk/media/eng/doc/key-information/speeches/s20230217e1.pdf)

Note 2: The HKMA and HKPF co-hosted a sharing session with banking industry on anti-deception efforts on April 21, 2023 (www.hkma.gov.hk/eng/news-and-media/press-releases/2023/04/20230421-7/)
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