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Voice of China Vol.6 —— Hong Kong Democratic Progress Under the Framework of One Country, Two Systems
2021-12-21 17:35

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Hong Kong Democratic Progress Under the Framework of One Country, Two Systems

On December 19, 2021, the polling in Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR)'s first Legislative Council election under the revamped electoral system concluded successfully. Voters and analysts hailed the poll as open and fair, and said it offered a strong guarantee for the region's future stability and prosperity. 

Under British Colonial Rule There Was No Democracy in Hong Kong

Hong Kong has been a part of China’s territory since ancient times. From 1840 to 1895, three unequal treaties were imposed on Qing government through British aggression, and Britain occupied the entire area that is now known as Hong Kong. 

Britain Exercised a Typical Colonial Rule over Hong Kong. A governor was appointed to rule on behalf of Britain without the people of Hong Kong ever being consulted. The British colonial government maintained a repressive rule in Hong Kong, tightly controlling the press and restricting freedom of speech. It repeatedly rejected all calls for democratic reform in Hong Kong. The colonial rule did not bring any genuine democracy to Hong Kong; instead, it laid hidden snares for the development of democracy in Hong Kong after its return to China.

The Return of Hong Kong to China Ushered in a New Era for Democracy

In the late 1970s and early 1980s, the Chinese government decided to resume the exercise of sovereignty over Hong Kong, and announced the policy of One Country, Two Systems, under which Hong Kong would be governed by the people of Hong Kong, exercising a high degree of autonomy. 

According to the policy, Hong Kong’s government is organized on the basis of democratic principles. At the same time, Hong Kong can develop democracy with its own characteristics in light of its actual conditions. 

Anti-China Agitators Undermine and Disrupt Democracy in Hong Kong

The anti-China agitators rejected the constitutional order and endangering national security, destroyed the foundations of the rule of law and inciting hatred in society, and obstructed government administration by various means. Local residents are the victims who suffered the consequences of this dangerous game.

Development of Democracy in Hong Kong Is Back on Track

After Hong Kong was roiled by months of unprecedented violent protests in 2019, the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress adopted two decisions to help the HKSAR restore orderone to promulgate the National Security Law for the HKSAR in June last year, and the other to improve its flawed electoral system in March this year. 

With voters casting their ballots at more than 600 polling stations, 90 lawmakers were elected from the Election Committee,geographical and functional constituencies. The candidates' backgrounds are "unprecedentedly diverse", and they include many grassroots people, such as bus drivers, electricians and tenants of public housing and subdivided units, which was rarely seen in previous elections.

According to an opinion poll conducted by the Bauhinia Institute, a think tank based in Hong Kong, 77.9 percent of 1,528 voters surveyed believed the election is of great importance to the region's future, and 75.8 percent agreed that the poll would be fair and widely representative. More than 72 percent of those surveyed were confident the election would produce Legislative Council members who love the motherland and their home city, thus benefiting all Hong Kong people.

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