Sunday, August 31, 2014

Beijing Rules Out Open Election in Hong Kong

Decision That Candidates Must Be Prescreened Draws Ire in Pro-Democracy Camp

By Brian Spegele in Beijing and Chester Yung in Hong Kong WSJ

China's government declared Sunday that candidates for Hong Kong's top post must be prescreened, effectively barring anyone unpalatable to Beijing from running.

The decree capped months of blunt reminders from Beijing of who's in charge in the former British territory and provided a clear demarcation of how far China will allow the city's democracy experiment to proceed.

It quickly drew ire from pro-democracy voices in Hong Kong, who have argued that residents should be allowed to directly nominate candidates for the post, and have threatened a mass civil-disobedience campaign if not offered "genuine choice" in 2017 elections.

"Hong Kong people have the reason to believe they have been betrayed," said Alan Leong, a Hong Kong pro-democracy legislator. "We cannot be the boss, we cannot have genuine choice," he said.

(More here.)

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