25 November 2017
AsiaNews.it Twitter AsiaNews.it Facebook
Geographic areas

  • > Africa
  • > Central Asia
  • > Europe
  • > Middle East
  • > Nord America
  • > North Asia
  • > South Asia
  • > South East Asia
  • > South West Asia
  • > Sud America
  • > East Asia
  •    - China
  •    - Hong Kong
  •    - Japan
  •    - Macau
  •    - North Korea
  •    - South Korea
  •    - Taiwan

  • » 09/12/2014, 00.00


    Occupy Central ready for a lavish democracy "banquet" in Hong Kong

    The "courses" include peaceful acts of civil disobedience to be held on an almost weekly basis. The first one will entail a 500-metre-long black banner to express Hongkongers' ire at Beijing's offer of universal suffrage. Chinese scholar warns that Beijing might restrict the territory's freedom. Catholic Church backs the student strike.

    Hong Kong (AsiaNews) - Occupy Central is preparing a lavish "banquet" for democracy whose main courses include peaceful actions as part of a campaign of civil disobedience.

    Occupy Central is made up of Hong Kong activists and citizens who want Beijing to keep its promise on democracy in the territory.

    As a start to the campaign, a protest is slated for this Sunday in which participants will parade a 500-metre-long black banner from Causeway Bay to Central to express Hongkongers' ire at Beijing's perceived insincerity in offering the city universal suffrage.

    The actual date and other details of the overall action are being kept secret, although participants have been informed, Occupy founder Benny Tai Yiu-ting said yesterday on the radio.

    The Occupy Central movement is carrying out its threat to stage a 10,000-strong sit-in in the city's business hub. The protest would take place on a public holiday to reduce inconveniences, Tai said. This will be the first of many protests, on an almost weekly basis, to make Hongkongers "wake up", Tai added.

    "We hope more Hongkongers will understand that even after the National People's Congress' decision, we still need to occupy and continue to fight for [true democracy]", he said.

    Tai was referring to China's official position on the election of Hong Kong's chief executive in 2017. Although Hong Kong's Basic Law, signed by Great Britain and China, sets up a real democratic process, the National People's Congress has determined that this will not be granted to the population. People can vote, but only for candidates selected by a pro-Beijing committee.

    Occupy Central's response has been the announcement of a new era of "civil disobedience", and the strike announced by student groups on 22 September is part of it. In view of this, the Catholic diocese, which runs 87 middle and secondary schools, will not punish students who go on strike.

    Card John Tong Hon, head of the diocese, told the church newspaper Kung Kao Po he shared the feelings of Hongkongers worried about Beijing's limits on nominations for the 2017 chief executive election. Card Joseph Zen Ze-kiun, bishop emeritus, in a comment to AsiaNews, wonders whether Occupy protests "provoked the Emperor's ire".

    Of course, Chinese authorities are concerned about the pro-democracy movement's renewed desire to demonstrate. In fact, Beijing could curtail Hong Kong's autonomy if actions such as Occupy Central go ahead, a mainland academic has warned.

    "If the Basic Law is not being recognised - as per Occupy Central's contention that it is draconian - I am afraid this relationship could only move towards political adjustment," said Professor Zhang Dinghuai, deputy director at Shenzhen University's Centre for Basic Laws of Hong Kong and Macau, in an article submitted to the South China Morning Post.

    For Occupy co-organiser Dr Chan Kin-man, Zhang had "completely misunderstood" the democracy movement. "Even if we undertake acts of civil disobedience, it can be handled by Hong Kong law. [. . .] It is frightening ... and dangerous for [Zhang] to suggest [that Beijing would adopt a political approach]."

    e-mail this to a friend Printable version

    See also

    27/10/2014 HONG KONG - CHINA
    Hong Kong after the revolution
    The pro-democracy Occupy Central movement frightened Beijing much more than the short-lived Jasmine Revolution. The government fears a "democratic infiltration" from the Special Administrative Region and will use every means at its disposal, including economics, to stop it. However, doing so it could destroy the country's most dynamic and innovative region. What follows is an analysis by an expert on China, courtesy of the Jamestown Foundation.

    21/08/2017 14:30:00 HONG KONG
    Tens of thousands protest conviction of student activists

    The protest rally was the biggest since 2014. Foreign pro-democracy activists and politicians criticise the court's decision, following the government’s appeal. Hong Kong’s chief secretary rejects the accusations, claiming that judicial independence is the foundation of the city's success.

    27/04/2017 11:40:00 HONG KONG-CHINA
    9 activists arrested in preparation for Xi Jinping visit to Hong Kong

    Those arrested are all members of groups struggling for democracy. Attempt to “frighten" public opinion. China excludes political reforms within the next 10 years. The EU: universal suffrage would give more solidity to the territory government.

    15/12/2014 HONG KONG - CHINA
    Hong Kong, no more occupied site. Catholics "will keep the fight for democracy"
    The Occupy Movement's last occupied site of Causeway Bay, a business and shopping district, was cleared by police today. Yesterday PIME fr. Franco Mella presided the Mass: "Don't be upset. We should have hope, like John the Baptist, who prepared the way for Jesus Christ".

    09/09/2014 HONG KONG - CHINA
    Pro-Beijing official compares striking students to triad gangs
    Wong Kwan-yu, a member of pro-Beijing Alliance for Peace and Democracy, threatens a campaign of slander and denunciations against those who boycott classes for true democracy in Hong Kong. He compares protesters to criminal gangs. For Occupy Central founder Benny Tai, the struggle is just beginning; more demonstrations in favour of universal suffrage will take place.

    Editor's choices

    “Hectic hours” before pope's arrival in Yangon, Catholics to help pilgrims

    Paolo Fossati

    Some 200,000 people are expected at the solemn Mass at Kyaikkasan Grounds, including Buddhist and Muslim leaders. Some 6,000 kids will take part in the Mass for young people the next day. Filipinos, Australians and Thais are also expected for Pope Francis’ apostolic journey. From our correspondent.

    The genocide of Yemen:First bombs, now hunger, thirst and cholera

    Pierre Balanian

    The coalition led by Riyadh blocks the arrival of fuel needed to run the wells. Over a million people without water in Taiz, Saada, Hodeida, Sana'a and Al Bayda. According to UNICEF, 1.7 million children suffer from acute malnutrition”; 150,000 children are likely to die in the coming weeks. The silence and neglect of the international community. The threat of hitting crude-cargo ships. Yesterday, Saudi Arabia allowed the reopening of Sana'a airport and Hudayda port, but only for humanitarian aid. An insufficient measure.


    AsiaNews monthly magazine (in Italian) is free.


    News feed

    Canale RSScanale RSS 

    Add to Google


    IRAN 2016 Banner

    2003 © All rights reserved - AsiaNews C.F. e P.Iva: 00889190153 - GLACOM®