chapter  5
18 Pages

Policing in Hong Kong and Macau

Transformations from the colonial era to special administrative region
WithLawrence Ka-Ki Ho

This chapter introduces key features of both territories' police forces and plots their coming-of-age from the violent leftist riots of the 1960s through the handovers of Hong Kong in 1997 and Macau in 1999, along with the latest developments in the first 'post-return' decade. It examines the evolving relationship between the police and society; the organizational differences of the two forces; and police involvement in internal security management against both general crime and social unrest. Policing literature and analyses of formal social control systems based on Western nation-states, exercising self-determination or otherwise, tends to fall into two major categories. Colonial policing is usually assumed to follow the 'coercive policing' paradigm, in which both hard power and soft power serve to secure the metropole's interests in the colony. Some recent research is beginning to re-evaluate this perception, critically examining assertions of repressive policing with material evidence and mindful of knee-jerk reactions against colonial revisionism.