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Hong Kong protesters call on former ruler Britain to pressure China

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Hong Kong protesters call on former ruler Britain to pressure China

By Nick Macfie

 

2019-09-15T010659Z_1_LYNXMPEF8E005_RTROPTP_4_HONGKONG-PROTESTS.JPG

Riot police is seen during a demonstration in Tin Shui Wai in Hong Kong, China, September 14, 2019. REUTERS/Amr Abdallah Dalsh

 

HONG KONG (Reuters) - Hong Kong protesters are expected to rally outside the British Consulate on Sunday demanding that the former colonial power ensures China honours its commitments to the city's freedoms.

 

The Chinese-ruled territory has been rocked by weeks of sometimes violent pro-democracy protests, with demonstrators angry about what they see as creeping interference by Beijing in their city's affairs despite a promise of autonomy.

 

The Sino-British Joint Declaration, signed in 1984, lays out Hong Kong's future after its return to China in 1997, a "one country, two systems" formula that ensures freedoms not enjoyed on the mainland.

 

"We ask UK to take immediate action on China not honouring the Sino-British Joint Declaration and acknowledge one country, two systems is not functioning," the rally organisers said.

 

The spark for the protests was planned legislation, now withdrawn, that would have allowed people to be sent to mainland China for trial, despite Hong Kong having its own much-respected independent judiciary.

 

The protests have since broadened into calls for universal suffrage.

 

China says it is committed to the "one country, two systems" arrangement, denies meddling and says the city is an internal Chinese issue. It has accused foreign powers, particularly the United States and Britain, of fomenting the unrest and told them to mind their own business.

 

Britain says it has a legal responsibility to ensure China abides by the 1984 declaration.

 

"The Joint Declaration is a legally binding treaty between the UK and China that remains as valid today as it was when it was signed and ratified over 30 years ago," a British Foreign Office spokeswoman said in June.

 

"As a co-signatory, the UK government will continue to defend our position."

 

But it was not immediately clear what Britain could do. It is pinning its hopes on closer trade and investment cooperation with China, which since 1997 has risen to become the world's second-largest economy, after it leaves the European Union as planned at the end of next month.

 

The rally is expected to start at around noon (0400 GMT). Rain is forecast, but that hasn't stopped protests before.

 

The Civil Human Rights Front has also called for a mass rally in Victoria Park, just to the east of the central business district, but police have denied permission because of earlier clashes after huge gatherings.

 

Protesters are expected to turn up early in the afternoon anyway.

 

(Writing by Nick Macfie; Editing by Robert Birsel)

 

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-- © Copyright Reuters 2019-09-15

 

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We can all sympathize with the HKers. But all they're going to get from the rest of the world is sympathy.

 

Expecting anything from the Brits currently is particularly laughable.

 

Basically they're on their own. If they handle themselves right, they may just win this round. But there are an indefinite number of further rounds to follow ...

 

 

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2 hours ago, NCC1701A said:

"Hello, UK Crisis Emergency Command Center. Can I help you?"

"This Hong Kong. We need you to come back now."

"You speak Farsi?"

 

 

and we have still got plenty of opium left over.  What have you got to trade?

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These guys are screwed.  The best that they can hope for is for someone to offer them sanctuary.

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2 hours ago, tomazbodner said:

2 things - UK is in complete shambles and they can't even get their own <insert dirty word here> in order. And second - UK already passed HK to China. It's like a fridge calling the shop to pressure the buyer to handle it in gloves.

 

One day HK will need to wake up to find out that they are a part of China. Semi autonomous but still a part of China. And with Chinese increasing influence, and UK's one going down the drain, counting on help from UK when it nearly completely depends on Chinese and Middle Eastern investments is equivalent to praying to Santa Claus.

 

Regardless of the <deleted> heap in UK politics at the moment, it simply is none of their business. Britain's lease expired and HK was handed back in 1997. HK is Chinese end of.

 

Same with the US. Not their business.

 

HK protesters went to the US and UK embassies but won't get anything but sympathy.

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11 minutes ago, car720 said:

These guys are screwed.  The best that they can hope for is for someone to offer them sanctuary.

 

Maybe they should all go to the German embassy? Quickly though before Merkel leaves office!

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oh, so they're demanding universal suffrage and direct election of government officials.  same as they had under british colonial rule, right?

 

say, just how did the brits deal with rioters and anarchists in their colonies?

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29 minutes ago, ChouDoufu said:

oh, so they're demanding universal suffrage and direct election of government officials.  same as they had under british colonial rule, right?

 

say, just how did the brits deal with rioters and anarchists in their colonies?

41 minutes ago, Baerboxer said:

Britain's lease expired and HK was handed back in 1997.

 

41 minutes ago, Baerboxer said:

Hong Kong Island was NOT leased. It was 100% British.  The areas around the Island (the New Territories) were leased. The British government made one of its many stupid decision to give the Island back when it had to relinquish the New Territories.  They did not  give the population a referendum to seek the will of the Hong Kong Island people. But when it came to British (white) people in the Falklands and Gibraltar - they were given a vote !   The shambolic  British withdrawal from Asia is still causing sufferings in the Indian sub-continent over Kasmir, and the in Burma the ethnic monorities which were shamefully handed over to the Burmese after WWII, despite the fact that they had aided the Anglo-Indian forces, whilst the Burmese, under the murderer Aung San, committed war crimes in their support for the Japanese.

 

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10 hours ago, mfd101 said:

We can all sympathize with the HKers. But all they're going to get from the rest of the world is sympathy.

 

Expecting anything from the Brits currently is particularly laughable.

 

Basically they're on their own. If they handle themselves right, they may just win this round. But there are an indefinite number of further rounds to follow ...

 

 

Britain still Number one in Soft power, more effective than War.

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Some really stupid remarks on here and some racist remarks (yes that card works both ways). First as someone who actually served there with the British Army let's just get one thing straight "Hong Kong residents rioted in the streets because they did not want British rule" plus comparing Hong Kong to the Falklands is just unbelievably stupid. Hong Kong wasn't invaded by a foreign power and our armed forces were not engaged in battle same as the Falklands. The islanders never wanted to leave the yoke of GB in fact they are very proud to be British again I was down there on op corporate. Britain is not in a state, Britain is still one of the biggest economies in the world and the 4th most powerful military. The way people talk about us as if we are some tin pot wonabee and the sad thing is a lot of these derogatory comments come from Brits. Nobody forces you to carry a British Passport just hand it back to the embassy in Bangkok if you hate Britain so much (got that from the posters who say if you don't like it leave and your a guest...). 

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11 hours ago, mfd101 said:

We can all sympathize with the HKers. But all they're going to get from the rest of the world is sympathy.

 

Expecting anything from the Brits currently is particularly laughable.

 

Basically they're on their own. If they handle themselves right, they may just win this round. But there are an indefinite number of further rounds to follow ...

 

 

Yeah. However, I do feel U.S. and English politicians will be compelled to be outspoken in support of H.K. protestors.

 

As for me? The people have their demands. All peoples in any country, who have demands, the gov. must and should obey the will of the People. At least in democratic and civilized ones..Americans of all people should be aware of that...

Edited by Solinvictus

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Don't be fooled as to what these Hong Kongers are fighting for. To me, they are are having a poverty rage. Yes, on average they may earn 77,000 baht per month, but the money that they earn is rather meaningless if they couldn't really afford to pay the rent of a reasonably-sized accommodation. 

The typical Hong Konger had always thought themselves as the highest class of Chinese there is, looking down others, especially the mainlanders. They looked down on all the overseas Chinese, with the exception of maybe the Singaporeans.

For a very long time, they have belittled the mainlanders as poor, uneducated, stupid, lazy, slow etc., but now they couldn't accept the reality that the "country bumpkins" across the border have became very rich and have managed to excel in many high tech industries.

The solution to their problems is easy, and that's what many farangs are doing in Southeast Asia anyway - get away from a place of very high cost of living and move to another location by lowering one's expectations. Hong Kongers are fortunate because they can chose to live, work or do business on the mainland but because they couldn't accept the reality that many mainland cities are now much better than Hong Kong, they chose to blame on others instead of themselves.

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Very little Britain can do even if there were the gumption, bar highlighting 'the deal' and perhaps offering citizenship. Some silly (labour or liberal probably) MP will say the wrong thing just to pee Beijing off... feel for the HKers to an extent, but at the end of the day, the politburo was never going to sit back and it'll all be done and dusted in a few years anyway.

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