Washington International Law Journal


Judith R. Krebs


The Ng Ka Ling decision by the Hong Kong Court of Final Appeals and its reversal by the Standing Committee of China's National People's Congress, raise serious concerns regarding the adequacy of judicial review and the protection of the rule of law in the new special administrative regions under China's "One Country, Two Systems" approach. Judicial review lies at the forefront of this controversy because it largely delineates the contours of local autonomy and the extent to which those who experience legal violations will have remedies. This Comment explores the roots of the conflict in Hong Kong and examines whether those same factors are present in Macau. After comparing the Basic Laws of Macau and Hong Kong, it concludes that the conflicts over judicial review in Hong Kong could occur in Macau. However, because of Macau's legal culture, particularly the inexperience of its judiciary, conflicts over judicial review will probably not reappear in Macau.

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