China's parliament today (May 28) approved Hong Kong's national security Bill that has caused turmoil in the city about concerns over freedoms in the financial hub.
The National People's Congress of more than 2,800 delegates voted in favour of the proposal to draft the law, which would punish breakaway, depravation of state power, terrorism and acts that endanger national security.
The security legislation could surface the way for Chinese security agencies to open up branches in Hong Kong. It targets secession,depravation,terrorism and foreign interference - terms that are increasingly used by authorities to describe last year's protests in the city.
Authorities in Beijing and Hong Kong insist there is no threat to the city's freedoms.
The NPC Standing Committee,which is likely to meet next in June,will now be tasked with formulating the legislation, which Beijing has stated must be done "at an early date".
Ahead of the Chinese parliament approving the Bill, the US cancelled Hong Kong's special status under US law, opening the way for the city to be removed of trading privileges, as Washington accused China of trampling on the territory's autonomy.
"No reasonable person can assert today that Hong Kong maintains a high degree of autonomy from China, given facts on the ground," stated Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, further adding the trade hub "does not continue to warrant" its special status.