The Standing Committee of China’s Congress on Saturday passed amendments to a law that will criminalise the intentional insulting of the national flag and emblem, after anti-government protesters in Hong Kong last year desecrated the Chinese flag.

According to the amended National Flag and National Emblem Law, which will take effect on January 1, those who intentionally burn, mutilate, paint, deface or trample the flag and emblem in public will be investigated for criminal responsibility.

The law also states that that national flag must not be discarded, displayed upside down or used in any manner that impairs the dignity of the flag. The law will also apply to Hong Kong and Macao.

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