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Role of UK judges on the Hong Kong Court of Final Appeal - update

A statement from Lord Reed, President of the Supreme Court, The Right Hon Lord Reed of Allermuir

27 August 2021

Further to my statement of 17 July 2020, I have been closely monitoring and assessing developments in Hong Kong, in discussion with the Foreign Secretary and the Lord Chancellor. Together, we have been reviewing the operation of the agreement under which UK judges have served there since 1997 in the light of those developments.

At this time, our shared assessment is that the judiciary in Hong Kong continues to act largely independently of government and their decisions continue to be consistent with the rule of law.

There also continues to be widespread support amongst the legal community in Hong Kong for the participation of UK and other overseas judges in the work of the Hong Kong Court of Final Appeal

Under these circumstances, Lord Hodge and I remain engaged in the Court of Final Appeal with the full support of the Foreign Secretary and the Lord Chancellor.

I am scheduled to sit from 31 August to 3 September and Lord Hodge is scheduled to sit before the end of 2021.

I will continue to assess the position in Hong Kong as it develops, in discussion with the UK Government.


For more information, or if you have any questions, please contact a member of the UK Supreme Court press office:

Sophia Linehan-Biggs - Joint Head of Communications (Monday to Wednesday)
020 7960 1887

Janet Coull Trisic - Joint Head of Communications (Wednesday to Friday)
020 7960 1887