NT residents protest against new border town

PUBLISHED : Friday, 21 September, 2012, 6:13pm
UPDATED : Friday, 21 September, 2012, 9:39pm


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Residents of the northeast New Territories protested against plans for a new town project near the mainland border, on Friday afternoon, outside government headquarters in Admiralty.

Unrolling banners and shouting slogans, about 10 protesters said the three planned towns under the project would sell out the interests of local residents for the benefit of mainlanders.

They demanded that the government withdraw the plan and that no homes be moved or torn down.

The residents are planning a protest march – from the North District Community Centre in Sheung Shui to the venue of a government consultation session on the project – on Saturday afternoon, to express their concerns.

They expect 3,000 residents to join the rally.

The project covers Fanling North, Kwu Tung North and Ta Kwu Ling, together with Ping Che. It is intended to provide 53,800 homes for 152,000 people.

Opponents of the three-town project complain that it will raze thousands of homes and farms. They fear that “economic integration” – cited as a key purpose of the development – will pave the way for removing physical barriers along the border.

Their fears were deepened when Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying said in June that he planned to allow mainlanders to enter Hong Kong’s border area – near the proposed new towns – without a visa.