Hong Kong is fast-tracking new security legislation that would impose life sentences for crimes such as treason and give police expanded powers amid increased pressure from Chinese leaders to get the process wrapped up quickly.

The 212-page bill was published by the government and debated in hastily arranged sessions in the city’s legislature on Friday. The government sped up the process after senior Chinese officials attending the National People’s Congress (NPC) urged the law’s passing, with leader John Lee returning early from Beijing to Hong Kong.

It was the first time a draft law was gazetted and debated in the Legislative Council on the same day since the former British colony returned to Chinese rule in 1997, according to a review of lawmaking records. The hearings will continue on Saturday.