Hong Kong's slap in the face to Beijing: 600 thousand vote in Democratic primary


The democratic opposition has chosen candidates for the September elections for the renewal of the local Parliament. Organizers: The high turnout represents a rejection of Beijing’s security law. Benny Tai: the pro-democracy front can win more than 45 seats. If disqualified by the authorities, the primary winners will appoint their replacement.

Hong Kong (AsiaNews) – Over 600 thousand people voted over the weekend in the primary organized by the democratic front to choose the candidates for September’s parliamentary.

The final results will be announced today.

Voters were challenging the pro-Beijing authorities who claimed taking part in vote could be seen as a violation of the new security law.

The organizers maintain that the high turnout (170 thousand participants were expected) is a resounding rejection of Beijing’s measures which entered into force on June 30. The new norm introduces the crimes of separatism, subversion, terrorism and collusion with foreign forces.

The Chinese Communist Party has imposed new legislation to stifle the democracy movement, which has been demonstrating for over a year in favor or Hong Kong’s autonomy from the motherland and to safeguard its liberal system.

Benny Tai, co-founder of the 2014 Occupy Central movement, and one of the organizers of the Democratic primaries, said today that democratic groups could get more than 45 seats in the new Legco (the local Parliament), gaining a solid majority.

Tai  believes that those among the electorate who to date had voted for the parties linked to the motherland are opposed to the security law, and will now side with the democratic opposition.

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However, representatives of the democratic front fear that the local government, under pressure from the Chinese government, will decide to disqualify the democratic candidates.

To counter this regard, Tai has announced that in the event of disqualification, the winners of the primaries will be able to nominate their substitutes.





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