Anti-China protesters rally in Hong Kong

November 6, 2016 4:00 pm

A demonstrator carries a former colonial flag during a protest against what pro-independence protesters see as Chinese interference in local politics, in , November 6, 2016. (Photo by Reuters)

Pro-independence protesters have taken to the streets in Hong Kong to condemn Chinese control over the semi-autonomous region.
The demonstrators on Sunday marched to the city’s court of final appeal and the Chinese liaison office while carrying banners that read, “Chinese law interpretation tramples on Hong Kong people.”
“Hong Kong has its own legal system, it should not be controlled by Chinese authorities,” said a participant in the rally.
The Sunday rally came after Beijing said it would decide on whether two newly-elected Hong Kong lawmakers, who have advocated a split from , would be allowed to enter the Legislative Council (Legco) in Hong Kong.
Last month, Baggio Leung and Yau Wai-ching called for Hong Kong’s independence from Chine during their oath-taking ceremony, causing a constitutional dispute between pro-Beijing and anti-Beijing camps in Hong Kong.
Yau and Leung, who won seats in citywide polls in September, are yet to be sworn in to the Legco, as their oath attempt was declared invalid when they draped themselves in banners that read, “Hong Kong is not China” and changed the wording of their formal oaths by using offensive terms and expletives.
The local government said on Friday that Beijing had notified Hong Kong authorities that China’s top legislative body would discuss a law that states council members must swear allegiance to the “Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of the People’s Republic of China.”
The legislative body is expected to announce a decision on the matter on Monday.
Hong Kong’s legislative, executive, and judiciary bodies are already separate from and independent of China, and Beijing only maintains authority in defense, foreign affairs and constitutional disputes.

Pro-independence lawmakers Yau Wai-ching, 25, (L) and Baggio Leung, 30, (R) hold a press conference at the Legislative Council in Hong Kong, November 4, 2016.(Photo by AFP)

Yau and Leung have said the interpretation would deal a “lethal blow” to the city.
Hong Kong was returned by Britain to China in 1997 under a deal that granted the city a semi-autonomous status.
The Monday ruling by China’s top legislative body, China’s National People’s Congress Standing Committee (NPCSC), would mark the fifth time since the handover that Chinese authorities have interpreted Hong Kong’s constitution.
Yau and Leung have called the chairman of the NPCSC and the city’s leader “traitors to Hong Kong.”
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