中共單方面表示中英聯合聲明失效事件簿

(photo via cc Flickr user mroach)

(photo via cc Flickr user mroach)

 

本文會討論中共單方面表示中英聯合聲明失效對香港的影響。由於我沒有法律專業背景,所以文中關於法例及憲法的問題,我是用common sense及字面解釋去推論。

其實,整件事對所有華裔BN(O)持有人有極深遠影響,我很奇怪為何沒有香港人要求英中雙方主動澄清。

 

第一份要讀的文件是由Lord Goldsmith為英國國會在2008年做的英國國籍檢討:Citizenship: Our Common Bound ,有關文件在英國簽署歐盟(EU)的里斯本條約的時間曾被廣範討論,因為歐盟要求英國要簡化其國籍架構。大家要留意的是該報告的74頁,段落篇號12(留意粗體紅字):

“From discussions that I have had in Hong Kong, it is clear to me that the demand for BN(O) status is dropping. Nonetheless to remove this status without putting something significant in its place would be seen as the British reneging on their promise to the people of Hong Kong. The only option which would be characterized as fair would be to offer existing BN(O) holders the right to gain full British citizenship. It is likely that many would not take this up as the prospects economic and fiscal of moving to the UK are not favourable to those well-established in Hong Kong. However, I am advised that this would be a breach of the commitments made between China and the UK in the 1984 Joint Declaration on the future of Hong Kong, an international treaty between the two countries; and that to secure Chinese agreement to vary the terms of that treaty would not be possible. On that basis, I see no alternative but to preserve this one anomalous category of citizenship.”

這是在整份報告中對BN(O)能否及應否獲得正式英籍(BC)的關鍵。在文字上看,Lord Goldsmith覺得要解決BN(O)這個畸胎的最佳辦法是讓BN(O)持有人轉回BC,不過據他理解由於BN(O) 轉為BC會違反中英聯合聲明,而中方亦不會同意修改中英聯合聲明,所有就此路不通。

 

我理解中英聯合聲明和BN(O)有關的內容,主要是寫在英方的備忘錄,主要內容如下:

“All persons who on 30 June 1997 are, by virtue of a connection with Hong Kong, British Dependent Territories Citizens (BDTCs) under the law in force in the United Kingdom will cease to be BDTCs with effect from 1 July 1997, but will be eligible to retain an appropriate status which, without conferring the right of abode in the United Kingdom, will entitle them to continue to use passports issued by the Government of the United Kingdom. This status will be acquired by such persons only if they hold or are included in such a British passport issued before 1 July 1997, except that eligible persons born on or after 1 January 1997 but before 1 July 1997 may obtain or be included in such a passport up to 31 December 1997.”

現時的問題是:

(i)如果中方認為中英聯合聲明失效,那麼在備忘錄內的協議也失效。最後Lord Goldsmith所說的不能給予BN(O)持有人有BC的理據亦失效。

(ii)即使英方不想單方面更改備忘錄內的協議,也因為中方堅持說中英聯合聲明在1997年回歸後已失效的理由,變成無意義。當然,英國政府可以表示需要立法才能解決問題。

(iii)而更重要的是當英國通過Borders, Citizenship and Immigration Act, 2009時只批准無國籍(de facto stateless)的香港BN(O)持有人轉為BC時,而不考慮給予所有BN(O)持有人轉為BC的理據,是中方在中英聯合聲明的中方備忘錄中,有這一段:

“Under the Nationality Law of the People’s Republic of China, all Hong Kong Chinese compatriots, whether or not they are holders of ‘British Dependant Territories citizens’ Passport’ or not, are Chinese nationals.”

 

如果我是一名華裔BN(O)持有人,在英方眼中,我擁有中國國籍的根據是中英聯合聲明的中方備忘錄中指出我有中國籍。當中共指出中英聯合聲明失效,那麼除非我有申請中國籍而獲批准,否則,我應該沒有中國籍。而我申請入中國籍的方法之一,就是申請香港特區護照。

所以,如果我是一名華裔BN(O)持有人而從沒申請香港特區護照,當中共公告說中英聯合聲名已於97年後失效的一刻,我就已經是無國籍的BN(O)持有人。那麼,我就應該可以Borders, Citizenship and Immigration Act, 2009申請轉為BC。

 

如果以此推論,英方應極不願意認同中英聯合聲明失效,所以不會去追究;而我就不知道中方是否理解到以上的法律性問題。無論如何,中共的說法可能打開了英國國籍法內的Pandora Box。

 

作者:奇雲

奇雲
作者為旅居海外的一名前香港公務員。現時在海外做人之患。

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文章資訊

ID: 96335
Date: 2015-01-15 16:20:53
Generated at: 2022-05-24 01:05:55
Permalink: https://www.vjmedia.com.hk/articles/2015/01/15/96335/中共單方面表示中英聯合聲明失效事件簿