Hong Kong Leader Carrie Lam welcomed the Chinese government’s plans to reform the Autonomous Region’s electoral system on paper to ensure that only “patriots” are on the candidate lists.
Carrie Lam welcomes Beijing’s actions.
Lam does not see the necessity to ask the public about the changes, as the decision was taken in Beijing.
– The decision came at the right time, and it is necessary, legal and constitutional, and the leadership of the central government and the mandate for decision-making is indisputable, she said in a press conference, according to Agence France-Presse.
The new law, which stipulates that all candidates in Hong Kong elections must be examined in a process aimed at eliminating opposition that did exist nonetheless, is currently being discussed by the National People’s Congress, and is expected to be reached on Thursday.
Hong Kong was under British rule for more than 150 years, but it was handed over to China in 1997. Then Beijing made a binding promise to preserve the freedoms and rights enjoyed by Hong Kong residents under the slogan “One Country, Two Systems”.
This summer, the Chinese regime pushed through the controversial National Security Act, which is widely believed to have torn apart the region’s independence and restricted the ability of the democratic movement to function, and is thus seen by many as a breach of the contract.
Hong Kong Election System
Changes in Hong Kong’s electoral system will be decided during the ongoing meeting with the People’s Congress, the country’s legislative assembly.
The pro-Communist Party Global Times reported that once the proposal has been drafted by the People’s Assembly, its standing committee will rewrite parts of what is known as the Basic Law of Hong Kong. Usually, changes to it are formally made by the Hong Kong Parliament.
The constitution was written in connection with the transfer of Hong Kong from the United Kingdom to China in 1997 and was intended to ensure the preservation of the “one country, two systems” formula. With the changes in China in Hong Kong, many believe that there are no longer two systems.
The European Union calls on China to consider the political and economic consequences before changing the electoral system in Hong Kong.
“The Communist Parliament of China has taken its biggest step so far to eradicate Hong Kong freedom,” Chris Patten, the last British governor of Hong Kong, said in a comment to Hong Kong Watch.