Anti-Beijing protesters rally outside British Consulate-General, urging UK to take back Hong Kong
Ten activists from the pro-independence group Hongkongers Come First rallied on Sunday outside the British Consulate-General in Admiralty, urging London to take back Hong Kong and help make the city an independent state.
They raised the Union Jack, waving placards and chanting slogans “Declare Sino-British Joint Declaration Void” and “Hong Kong Is Our Country” during the rally, which was closely monitored throughout by a dozen of uniform and plainclothes police officers.
The group claimed that Beijing’s white paper on Hong Kong, released last week, was proof that China had broken its promise in the joint declaration that it would give Hong Kong a high degree of autonomy.
In a Chinese language petition letter, addressed to the queen, British Prime Minister David Cameron, and British consul-general Caroline Wilson, the group said Hong Kong’s democratisation, press freedom and independent judiciary had been eroded after the handover.
“Hong Kong people ruling Hong Kong [and a] high degree of autonomy, have become the lie of the century,” the petition said.
One activist Billy Chiu Hin-chung said: “Hong Kong should be made an independent state. Hong Kong is our country. We are not Chinese.”
He urged Britain to get back Hong Kong from China and hold a referendum in the city to decide whether Hong Kong should be made independent.
The protesters dispersed after a security guard from the British consulate said the consul-general had received their petition letter.
In the Sino-British Joint Declaration, signed in 1984, London agreed to hand over Hong Kong to China while China promised Hong Kong a high degree of autonomy and allowed it to keep its capitalist economic and trade systems.
The white paper issued by the China State Council’s information office on June 10 also said Hong Kong could exercise a high degree of autonomy under the “one country, two systems” policy devised by the late Chinese leader Deng Xiaoping. But the white paper stressed that the central government had the “power of oversight” over the high degree of autonomy.