New Zealander living in Hong Kong says he is 'at risk' from new security law, but won't leave yet

A New Zealander living in Hong Kong says he will not return back to Aotearoa immediately even as tensions rise with China. 

On Tuesday the Government suspended its extradition treaty with Hong Kong, in response to Beijing's controversial security law.

The new security law allows for extradition from Hong Kong to the Chinese mainland and targets separatist activity, state subversion, terrorist activity and collusion with foreign forces. Anyone convicted of protesting, or helping others protest against the law could face charges under it. The maximum penalty is life imprisonment. 

The man, who wishes to remain anonymous, says he will not come home straight away despite the added risk.

"If you look at the letter of the law it does have massive implications for all foreigners living here, including me," he told Newshub.

"I am at risk of being extradited to China so it does pose a risk but it's sort of like all laws - if you don't intend on breaking it you don't have as much to worry about."

He says the situation is causing him a bit of anxiety but it's unclear how it will affect him and other foreigners in Hong Kong. 

"As someone who's a Kiwi living here we haven't seen how China and Hong Kong will respond to other countries which have done that like the UK and Australia.

"We haven't seen any foreigners affected by this law yet."

On Wednesday China's Foreign Ministry spokesperson Wang Wenbin announced China would be halting Hong Kong's extradition agreements with Canada, Australia and the UK. 

Wang also warned there will be consequences for the suspension of the extradition treaty, saying China urged New Zealand to "immediately correct its mistake and stop interfering in China's Hong Kong affairs to avoid damage to bilateral relations".