The top legal affairs official of Beijing's Liaison Office in Hong Kong, Wang Zhenmin, has warned that the central government will drop the "one country, two systems" principle if it ends up threatening China.
Wang said "one country, two systems" was adopted for Hong Kong's peaceful reunification with China.
But he stressed that "one country" must come before "two systems".
Speaking at a seminar one day after warning that Hong Kong must learn to adapt to China - not the other way around, Wang said the SAR must wholeheartedly accept that its sovereignty has been returned to China for good.
Wang said China will not allow an independence movement to develop in Hong Kong.
He said that if Hong Kong uses this principle to threaten the country as a whole, then it will dispense with it.
Meanwhile, Chief Executive, CY Leung, told the same seminar that the reference to "50 years unchanged" in the Basic Law does not mean that Beijing’s sovereignty over Hong Kong can be changed after 50 years. He said the term only refers to the capitalist system.