Australia updates HK travel advisory

Local | 9 Jul 2020 10:51 am

Australia is advising its nationals to avoid visiting Hong Kong in the wake of the national security law that became effective.

The level 4: do not travel advisory, which was originally in place due to the Covid-19 travel advice, has been updated in response to the new legislation.

Under a Level 4 advisory, the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, says: "If you're already in this location, consider leaving. If you do travel, get professional security advice. Your travel insurance policy might be void. The Australian Government may not be able to help you.''

In the updated travel advisory today, the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, says the new national security legislation for Hong Kong could be interpreted broadly. Under the law, you could be deported or face possible transfer to mainland China for prosecution under mainland law.

The full extent of the law and how it will be applied is not yet clear, the travel advisory says.

"You may be at increased risk of detention on vaguely defined national security grounds. You could break the law without intending to. If you’re concerned about the new law, reconsider your need to remain in Hong Kong.''

The Level 4 alert says "your health and safety is at extreme risk. This may be because of a high threat of terrorist attack, conflict, violent social unrest, widespread infectious disease or critical levels of violent crime. It could be a combination of risks.

If you travel to this location you're at a high risk of death, imprisonment, kidnapping or serious injury.

During the coronavirus pandemic, the risks include getting infected with the coronavirus and significant travel and movement restrictions.

If you get into trouble, the Australian Government may be unable to help. In most cases, our ability to provide consular assistance in these destinations is extremely limited.

Any travel by Australian officials to ‘Do not travel’ locations is subject to high-level approval. It includes rigorous risk assessment and movement planning usually involving the use of armoured vehicles.

You should not travel to this location. If you're already in a 'Do not travel' area, consider leaving. If, despite our advice, you decide to travel to a location with a travel advice level of 4, it's your responsibility to follow all the advice for levels 1, 2 and 3, as well as the following, the Level 4 alert says.


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