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  • Dec 22, 2014
  • Updated: 9:48am
Edward Snowden
NewsHong Kong

We don't owe anyone an apology, says US consul over Edward Snowden affair

Hong Kong still waiting for US reply on Snowden hacking allegations, says security chief

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 18 July, 2013, 5:47pm
UPDATED : Friday, 19 July, 2013, 10:35am

Outgoing US consul in Hong Kong Stephen Young said on Thursday the US did not owe any country an apology in relation to the alleged hacking activities disclosed by whistle-blower Edward Snowden.

But Young did say the United States government would address queries made by Hong Kong officials on the issue in its own time and manner.

"But I don’t think we owe an apology to anyone," he said when speaking at the Foreign Correspondents' Club in Central on Thursday afternoon.

The root of the problem here is we have somebody [Snowden] who violated his trust with the US and chose Hong Kong to demonstrate that
Stephen Young, US consul, Hong Kong

“Because I think the real root of the problem here is we have somebody [Snowden] who violated his trust with the United States and chose Hong Kong as a place to demonstrate that.”

He also said that Snowden had made a lot of allegations and many seemed to be self-serving in an attempt to garner sympathy for himself.

Young did say that the Snowden saga had damaged the trust between Hong Kong and the US but he believed it could be restored.

"I wouldn’t be leaving here with the generally optimistic view of Hong Kong if I thought that the damaged trust couldn’t be restored."

Earlier on Thursday, Secretary for Security Lai Tung-kwok told Hong Kong lawmakers that Hong Kong was still waiting for a reply from the United States on claims made by Snowden that US agencies had hacked into the city’s computers.

Lai was speaking at a Legislative Council meeting to discuss the revelations made last month by the American whistle-blower and ex-CIA worker.

“The Security Bureau wrote to the US on June 22 to seek an explanation. We are looking forward to a comprehensive and thorough clarification for Hongkongers as soon as possible,” Lai said in an opening speech.

We are looking forward to a comprehensive and thorough clarification for Hongkongers as soon as possible
Secretary for Security Lai Tung-kwok

Lai said that with regard to the Snowdon case, his allegations of US hacking into Hong Kong’s computer systems was the top concern of the city’s lawmakers and people.

He also said the city had facilities to guard against cyberattacks and had invested in the research and development of new internet security technology.

Snowden told the South China Morning Post in mid-June – soon after fleeing his home country – that Washington had been hacking into mainland China and Hong Kong computer systems for years. One target in the city, he said, was the hub for Hong Kong’s internet traffic located on the Chinese University of Hong Kong’s campus in Sha Tin.

Snowden, who is wanted by Washington for leaking details of the US intelligence surveillance programmes, is now seeking temporary asylum in Russia after spending more than three weeks in a Moscow airport transit lounge trying to find a country that would grant him asylum.


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This article is now closed to comments

bluechinagroup Jul 20th 2013
HKbulib, well said on the ignorant comment. You should have seen johnyuan at his pinnacle of ignorance hen he tried to claim that the rule of law is an "outdated" concept.
To: bluechinagroup
Bring some fresh idea to your next debate. But you did inspire me to say that Hong Kong’s rule of law is based on common law which has its origin from a class society. So either you rule or be ruled and take what comes to you. I am sure you are quite familiar otherwise you will not be this belligerent. Hong Kong shouldn’t be trumpeting rule of law for a modern city when it is not. You must be still quite young. Learn to think outside the box and you will see more.
Sounds like many of you not even suspect or believe Chinese government Is hacking Hk government. Are u a little bit too naive.
We are all looking forward for China to replace the USA as the world's Leading Superpower! About time that this beacon of freedom, tolerance, respect, and good manners takes over.
Yeah, it would be the exchange of one nazi regime by another:)
It seems that the US has ever made any apology was to the natives America killed during the wild wide west era. So, to make it simple, you want an apology? Either you are one of them or you were dead years ago.
The native Americans in the USA are still pretty much being screwed over and denied opportunities. The living conditions in the reservations the US established is totally third world with zero employment opportunities. It makes HK's city of sadness seem like paradise in comparison.
Harold Cameron
This is typical of the attitude of the US, expecting everyone to grovel to them, but not accepting that their wrongdoing is anything other than O.K.
Rather like Britain who still consider that their role in world politics is as important as it was 150 years ago the Americans are running scared of China. Inevitably this will end in war within the next 100 years as both nations appear to be intransigent in their differing dogmas.
Quit bickering and be thankful that you are able to type English but not Japanese. Don't tell me you have no skeletons in the closet. Necessary evil is required to accomplish greater things and that is why they are not obligated to owe us ( HK being just a blip on the map ) any explanation. Your thesis on anti american sentiment is weak. Tell us something we don't know.
I wonder what 'greater things' are still left these days... sigh
It should be a common sense that espionage is actually happening everywhere, among individuals, companies and nations. And an apology from the US consul surely cannot not stop such things, people could only just find an acceptable reason to let such "evil" things go, at least emotionally. Because we know that we do not have the ability to stop espionage, just like we sometimes cannot even control our own curiosity of discovering other people's secrets. We know that nations spy on each other all the time, we just hope they could do it in a more smart and secret way in case of hurting people's emotional feelings.



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