• Sat
  • Aug 23, 2014
  • Updated: 11:43am
NewsHong Kong
POLITICS

US voices support for 2017 election method that is 'credible' to Hong Kong people

US Secretary of State John Kerry discussed Hong Kong with Chinese officials this week; credible election 'would give credibility to city's next leader'

PUBLISHED : Friday, 11 July, 2014, 3:07pm
UPDATED : Friday, 11 July, 2014, 3:17pm

Washington has voiced support for the next chief executive of Hong Kong to be elected by a method that the city’s residents judge to be “credible”.

While avoiding taking a stance on which method the city should use to elect its next leader, a spokesman for the United States Department of State said an election deemed credible by the people would in turn give credibility to whoever is elected.

That would be beneficial to the long-term stability of the territory, the department said.

“We are not taking positions about what particular [electoral] formula is right for [Hong Kong]. But we certainly believe that an approach that is judged credible by the people of Hong Kong will extend credibility to the person who is ultimately selected as the chief executive and contribute to the long-term stability and prosperity of Hong Kong,” the spokesman told reporters in Beijing on Wednesday.

He was speaking after US Secretary of State John Kerry’s visit to Beijing earlier this week for the latest round of strategic and economic talks between the US and China.

Kerry met Chinese officials, and the subject of Hong Kong was discussed.

“There was discussion of Hong Kong…[Mr Kerry] underscored our support for the application of the ‘one country, two systems’ principle, the Basic Law, and universal suffrage in connection with the 2017 election of the chief executive,” the spokesman said.

“The secretary made clear that the US respects and recognises the sensitivities of the issue [of universal suffrage] and the importance of the issue.”

The spokesman said the Chinese officials had also expressed their views, but did not elaborate.

In Hong Kong, Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying is expected to submit a report on electoral reform for the 2016 Legislative Council elections and 2017 chief executive election to the National People’s Congress Standing Committee next week.

Almost 800,000 people called for the public to be allowed to nominate candidates for the top job in an unofficial referendum.

Beijing has rejected the idea of public nomination, and called the public poll “illegal”.

Pan-democrats fear that without some form of public nomination, the central government would be able to screen out candidates it does not want to stand through a nominating committee that would be stacked with Beijing-friendly members.

On July 1, at least 140,000 and as many as 510,000 people marched through Hong Kong Island calling for democracy and an open election in 2017.

 

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This article is now closed to comments

ianson
If Anson Chan and Martin Lee had not taken the brave step of flying to Washington, this appropriate, measured and respectful US official statement may never have been made. It is vitally important that Beijing be reminded that its conduct vis a vis Hong Kong is not going completely unnoticed by the community of nations of which it aspires to be a full member. We must thank Chan and Lee for their contribution to the delivery now of that message.
blue
"On the other hand, they both support the populist demand which asks for public nomination. Which side are they on? They can either support an AMENDMENT to the Basic Law to allow for public nomination, or support the current method laid out in the Basic Law, but not BOTH!"

Or they can support a Nominating Committee that has an electoral base partially or fully made up of registered HK voters. HK people vote in some or all of the members of the Nominating Committee during the Nominating Committee sub sector elections, and then the Nominating Committee nominates the CE using a threshold similar to the one in 2012. This wouldn't violate the Basic Law and would still meet international standards too.
Anti communist HKer
Blue is 100% right here. Given the framework of the Basic Law, a nominating committee that is voted on by the HK people is probably the most sensible approach.
This is not unlike the US electoral college system, where people actually vote for their delegate to cast the electoral college vote for the president. This explains how Al Gore won the popular vote in 2000, but George W. Bush wound up in the White House. Now, let's hope that money doesn't influence HK politics to the degree that it is doing in the US currently.
blue
"Now, let's hope that money doesn't influence HK politics to the degree that it is doing in the US currently."

hear hear!
sundayatscmp
The US response sounds so much like our Anson Chan's. They both "support for the application of the ‘one country, two systems’ principle, the Basic Law, and universal suffrage in connection with the 2017 election", knowing that public nomination is inconsistent with the Basic Law. On the other hand, they both support the populist demand which asks for public nomination. Which side are they on? They can either support an AMENDMENT to the Basic Law to allow for public nomination, or support the current method laid out in the Basic Law, but not BOTH!
ianson
Neither has been inconsistent in their statements. Neither has said they support public nomination. Both have stated unequivocally that Hong Kong must have genuine democracy. There are many NC formulations which can achieve that without public nomination and without the need of amendment to the Basic Law.
cleareye
"On July 1, at least 140,000 and as many as 510,000 people marched through Hong Kong Island calling for democracy and an open election in 2017." What the xxxx does this mean? SCMP bowing to political pressure and deny its own findings?
gunzy
even it's own findings are not verifiable.
.
Interesting that they disregarded the police number as well as the the university numbers.
 
 
 
 
 

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