China Won’t Allow Open Elections in Hong Kong




China’s central government declared on Sunday that all candidates for Hong Kong’s chief executive position in the 2017 election must be approved by Beijing’s 1,200-member nominating committee, quashing the notion of a fully democratic election.

The announcement set off a protest outside Hong Kong’s government headquarters on Sunday, the latest in a series of demonstrations against what democracy activists say is Beijing’s attempt to bring Hong Kong more firmly under the central government’s control

When the United Kingdom transferred jurisdiction of Hong Kong to China in 1997, the island was promised significant autonomy and its first open election for the city’s leader in 2017. A Beijing-controlled committee has chosen the the head of the city’s government for the past 17 years, and the central government has said it will continue to oversee the electoral process, according to Time. Before Hong Kong became a part of China, it was ruled by a colonial government, although citizens did get to elect local officials after 1985. Those officials were part of “district councils” that governed portions of the city, and did not include Hong Kong’s governor, a British official who served as head of the city’s government (similar to the role that the chief executive assumes now) Read more…

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