Tiananmen Square crackdown

Questions at the airport

PUBLISHED : Friday, 06 June, 2003, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 06 June, 2003, 12:00am

With the imminent introduction of Article 23 legislation and as we remember those who died in Tiananmen Square, I ask our Immigration Department its purpose in tracking the movements of Hong Kong citizens. Every time I depart Chek Lap Kok airport, officials ask me where I am going and again, upon arrival, where I have come from.

Seems that Big Brother is already watching us. When I challenge officials about the request, they give the excuse that the information is for 'statistical reasons', and I have even been detained in a room and threatened with missing my flight as a result of asking the question.

Why would immigration need such information? Or if it is acting on behalf of another agency, why are immigration officials, who are paid by the taxpayer, being used for this purpose?

This data can easily be collected by less intrusive means and with less sinister overtones - for example, via airline manifests or travel agencies.


Article 23 and rallies

You ask if Article 23 will prevent public commemoration of the Tiananmen crackdown next year (June 4). Yes, I think so. This is precisely what Article 23 is designed for - to silence any opinion other than that of Beijing.

Dr A. LIN, Perth, Australia