The protests are being held in order to achieve universal suffrage in Hong Kong. Although democracy had been promised for 2017 in 2008, China announced this August that Hong Kong people would only be able to vote from a pool of 2-3 specially selected candidates (all of whom…
I am a student from Hong Kong. We are just students that love our homeland and are willing to fight for our future, our rights and democracy and now, Hong Kong’s democracy is at its most critical moment.
The people of Hong Kong have been fighting for the full democracy since before the handover. Their demand for genuine universal suffrage and open elections for their city’s leader and legislature has been persistent, loud and clear. Yet, seventeen years after the handover from British to Chinese rule, there is still no open and free election for the city’s Chief Executive, nor a fully direct-elected Legislative Council in Hong Kong. In late June of this year, more than half a million Hong Kong citizens took part in a Civil Referendum to endorse civil nomination and demand the Legislative Council to veto any electoral reform proposals that fails to meet the international standard. One week later, half a million of Hong Kongers took to the street to further demonstrate their demand for genuine democratic reform in the annual July 1 march.
Unfortunately, Hongkongers’ clear and fair demand for having a proper say in the affairs of their own city is ignored by the People’s Republic of China (PRC) and the Hong Kong SAR governments. On 31 August, PRC’s National People’s Congress Standing Committee passed a resolution that rejects any reformation in the electoral method of Legislative Council in 2016 and insists that they would only permit Hong Kongers “voting” for their chief executive among 2-3 stringently pre-screened candidates. Despite the undemocratic nature of the PRC’s decision and an election process that only served to cement Beijing political rein on the city Hong Kong SAR government still urges its citizens to accept such plan. With the prospect of further democratic process quickly fading, Hong Kong’s democracy movement has reached a critical point.
In this critical moment, we have no choice. We must unite and fight for democracy. In Hong Kong, the movement Occupy Central is launching a civil disobedience occupation while Hong Kong Federation of Students, Scholarism and various student associations have called on a city-wide student strike. During the weeklong student strike, the students have tried through various methods expressed their demand for universal suffrage and have tried to open dialogue with the Chief Executive CY Leung but Leung refused to have dialogue with them. Furthermore, when the students tried to reclaim the Civil Square for the public and to exercise their rights of peaceful assembly, they were brutally cracked down by the police.
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Also, you can follow the live broadcast of the student strike in Hong Kong.