採訪/劉惠 編輯/李謙 後製/君卓
Only Approved Overseas Chinese Citizens Can Return to China
From July 2013, any overseas Chinese citizens will have
to get prior official approval before returning to China to live.
The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) regime’s
new regulation has led to public doubt and criticism.
People are speculating that this may be the CCP’s
new way to restrict dissidents from entering China.
This June, CCP authorities approved a new regulation
for the immigration and emigration of Chinese citizens.
The law stipulates that Chinese citizens residing abroad,
but who want to return to China to live, need to apply
to CCP diplomatic units before they can enter the country.
It is similar to the 1994 version of the exit /entry regulation.
The difference is which department
is now making the decision of acceptance.
Previously, it was the Public Security Bureau, and
now it is the Overseas Chinese Affairs Department.
The Overseas Chinese Affairs Department works directly
under authority of the CCP United Front Work Department.
The new law maintains the stipulation that restricts Chinese
citizens’ entering China, which has perplexed the public.
A netizen criticized, “how unreasonable it is!
It amounts to depriving people of citizenship.
This happens nowhere else in the world!”
Another netizen wrote, “we just need a little
more patience until the CCP collapses in 2013.
Then we’ll be able to return home, happily.”
Chinese lawyer Zhang Hui thinks
the stipulation is very strange.
In other democratic countries like Canada, there
are no exit/entry controls over its own citizens.
Zhang Hui: “I think it’s irrational to restrict
Chinese citizens’ entering and leaving China.
It may be the regime’s logic that since you
have left China, you won’t be welcomed back.
But this is unreasonable and absurd thinking, in my mind.”
Political observer He Anquan comments that this
regulation seems to treat overseas Chinese as foreigners.
Behind it, the motives of the CCP authorities
may be to collect money and to 『maintain stability’.
He Anquan: “For example, many overseas Chinese
exiles still hold People’s Republic of China passports, for the sake of democratic movement.
They’re the targets that are blocked
from entering China by the regime.
This can be viewed as a new tactic for 『stability preservation.”
Mr. Li from mainland China is now living in the U.S.
He thinks that the regulation is against China’s constitution.
Mr. Li: “In essence, it still aims to control the people.
In 1949, the Hukou system (forced family
registration) was promulgated across China.
The regime has long controlled Chinese people until today.
By contrast, the overseas Chinese are beyond its reach.
Thus, it sees the time when overseas Chinese return
to China as a chance to continue its control.”
The issue of how to implement this new regulation,
and how to define the concept of “settle in China", has also puzzled the public.
Staff of CCP diplomatic units stated in interview that they
have not yet received specific measures for implementation.