Calls by some democrats to end one-party rule in China should not be seen as an obstacle to open dialogue with Beijing, chairman of the SynergyNet think-tank Anthony Cheung Bing-leung said. Professor Cheung, of City University's public and social administration department, said 'the end of communist rule' was only the slogan of the Alliance in Support of the Patriotic Democratic Movement of China. 'The alliance remains a non-government body and there is no concrete action to bring the communist rule to an end,' he said. On Thursday, Federation of Trade Unions vice-chairman and legislator Tam Yiu-chung quoted Vice-President Zeng Qinghong as saying that Beijing would communicate with everyone except those advocating an end to one-party rule. Some alliance core leaders, such as Szeto Wah and Martin Lee Chu-ming, are also members of the Democratic Party. Professor Cheung, also a former Democrat legislator, believed mainland officials had realised that the democrats could not be sidelined indefinitely. He said some local pro-Beijing politicians had also softened their opposition to Beijing engaging in dialogue with the democrats. He said the central government should adopt a liberal approach and talk to everyone. 'Beijing need not worry. After all, the democrats are only one of the many players on its chess board who have to abide by the rules of the game.'