Publication Type

Journal Article

Publication Date

9-1991

Abstract

Under the most current constitution, written in 1982, the citizens of the PRC are guaranteed freedom of the press, speech, assembly, association, procession, and demonstration; furthermore, all citizens enjoy the rights and assume the responsibilities prescribed by the constitution and the law. In 1989, following the student democracy demonstrations in the PRC, the government circulated a draft of the law concerning assemblies, processions, and demonstrations for public comment. While the 24 articles of the draft legislation effectively removed the right to free public protest by interposing a variety of administrative procedures governing proscription of venue, application, approval, and review, the eventual law did make some attempt to "democratize" the process. Even so, the public security organs now have absolute power to cancel protest activities and arrest any participants or organizers and the category of areas designated as "off limits" to public assemblies has been expanded. The way in which the legislation was passed, its constitutional language, and the ascription to regulation for the protection of citizens' rights reveal the utility of legality in ensuring political legitimacy and highlight the manipulation of the legislative process in the PRC by the government as motivated by foreign policy concerns.

Keywords

Freedom of assembly and association, Legislative impact, China

Discipline

Asian Studies | Constitutional Law | Legislation

Research Areas

Law, Society and Governance

Publication

Journal of Law and Society

Volume

18

Issue

1

First Page

365

Last Page

373

ISSN

0263-323X

Publisher

Wiley: 9 months

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

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