The way lawmakers vote on the controversial proposal that will determine how the city’s chief executive is elected in 2017 will show whether they support the principle of “one country, two systems”, Basic Law Committee chairman Li Fei said on Sunday. The strong words came in a closed-door meeting in Shenzhen on Sunday between Beijing officials and Hong Kong lawmakers from all sides as they made a last-ditch bid to reach an agreement on the political framework surrounding the election of the next leader of Hong Kong. The session, however, proved fruitless as pan-democrats announced at the end of the meeting that they would vote down the government's proposal. Zhang Xiaoming, director of the central government’s liaison office in Hong Kong, had earlier warned pan-democratic lawmakers that voting down the reform blueprint would be punished by voters in next year’s Legislative Council election. Li said the fate of reform would also be a watershed for pan-democrats to decide whether to switch to be cooperative, which will bring a win-win solution, or continue to go confrontational, where no one wins. Dear lawmakers, how you are going to vote on the reform proposal would be the litmus test of whether to support or oppose the principle of “one country, two systems” and the Basic Law Basic Law Committee chairman Li Fei In his opening speech, Li insisted the government reform plan - which pan-democrats said would effectively screen out candidates with different political stances - was “democratic, open, fair and just” and was the best universal suffrage model. He said the proposal had already fully taken the “reasonable views” floated by Hong Kong society and received broad public support. “Some Hongkongers might think their views are not taken, but it depends on what kind of opinions they are,” said Li, referring to pan-democrats’ call for allowing public to name chief executive hopefuls or overhauling the formation of nominating committee which is likely to be dominated by pro-Beijing figures. Li said such suggestions were not in line with Basic Law, the city’s mini-constitution. “We cannot do anything that violates the Basic Law,” he said, adding Beijing had already incorporated many legal suggestions into the proposal. He said pan-democrats’ attempts to vote down the proposal would deprive all Hongkongers of voting rights. Earlier, the top Beijing official in charge of Hong Kong affairs called on lawmakers to make a decision they would not later regret ahead of a Legco vote next month on the government package of the 2017 chief executive election. When the majority of voters feel that their right to elect the chief executive by ‘one man, one vote’ was deprived of because of some lawmakers’ discontent or political consideration, [voters] will use other votes on their hands to express their discontent and anger as well. I am afraid that it might not be an empty threat for …some people to say that [pan-democrats] will pay for the debt with their votes Zhang Xiaoming, director of the central government’s liaison office in Hong Kong Wang Guangya, director of the Hong Kong and Macau Affairs Office, made the call during his opening remarks at the four-hour meeting between Beijing officials and Hong Kong lawmakers in Shenzhen on Sunday, and reassured legislators that Beijing is willing to engage various sectors including pan-democrats on the city's political reform. In a 12-minute photo session open to the media, Wang Guangya, director of the State Council’s Hong Kong and Macau Affairs Office, spent three minutes making an opening speech in which he stressed that Beijing would “unswervingly and sincerely support” Hong Kong in electing the chief executive by popular ballot in 2017. “Regardless of the resistance it faces, the central government would make its best effort,” Wang said. “The central government is willing to engage different sectors in Hong Kong, including the pan-democrats, and to forge a consensus within the maximum limit based on the Basic Law and the relevant decisions of the National People’s Congress Standing Committee. “On implementing universal suffrage for the chief executive, Legislative Council members have a critical role and great responsibility. The central government sincerely hopes and calls on all lawmakers to respond to the people’s will and correctly exercise the right on their hands with courage a sense of responsibility, based on Hong Kong’s fundamental and long-term interest as well as the nation’s overall interest. This [means] pushing forward Hong Kong’s democratic development and social progress, as well as making a contribution that would not [result in any] regret in history,” Wang added. Wang went on to attack what he called a "small minority" of "stubborn" pan-democrats. He said he understood that there are “two categories of pan-democrats”. “The first category is the small minority … who uses ‘democracy’ [to conceal their] view of Hong Kong as an independent political entity. They twist the Basic Law deliberately, obstruct the Hong Kong government’s governance, and stubbornly resist the central government’s rule … The central government’s stance about them is that it will firmly and clearly fight against them, and the chief executive election system must rule them out,” Wang said. “But the other category is the majority of pan-democratic friends. Many of them care about the country and Hong Kong’s future prospect, and agree the nation’s resumption of sovereignty over Hong Kong … I hope to have more opportunity to communicate with these pan-democratic friends, and to exchange ideas on any issue based on our common political foundations.” Beijing officials and Hong Kong's pan-democrats are meeting in Shenzhen for what is seen as the final negotiation on electoral reform - but few politicians see a real chance of either side yielding concessions. The four-hour talks, chaired by Chief Secretary Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor, are considered the last chance for both sides to reach a breakthrough before the legislature votes on the government package of the 2017 chief executive election next month. “In Hong Kong, we live under the same roof and journey on the same boat, advancement on democracy is our common goal, and now is time for different parties and people with different political beliefs to seek agreement while keeping their differences, and create a ‘multi-win’ situation. If the reform package is voted down, it will only create a situation of many losing sides, and many people will be very disappointed,” Lam warned. Beijing’s liaison office chief Zhang Xiaoming’s four-page speech was also released to the press. In a reference to the pan-democrats, Zhang said he knew that “some lawmakers are facing a dilemma” on political reform, but he suggested that they should make “the difficult choice” based on five factors, including public opinion, election considerations, prospect for future reform in Legco, economic and livelihood impacts, and their relationship with Beijing. The team of pro-establishment lawmakers left the meeting after two hours to offer pan-democrats a chance to negotiate with Beijing officials exclusively. The central government sincerely hopes and calls on all lawmakers to respond to the people’s will and correctly exercise the right on their hands with courage a sense of responsibility Wang Guangya, Director of the State Council’s Hong Kong and Macau Affairs Office in Hong Kong Pro-establishment executive Council member and lawmaker Jeffrey Lam Kin-fung, of the Business and Professionals Alliance, said Beijing officials had sent a very clear message that there was no room for concession in the government package, which strictly follows NPCSC’s August decision. He hoped pan-democrats would not wrongly perceive the current situation and miss the chance to allow all Hongkongers to return the chief executive in “one man, one vote”. Lam Tai-fai, who represents the industrial sector, said the officials had made it clear that those who are not patriotic would not be appointed by the central government even if they win the chief executive poll - not to say they would not be accepted as the candidates at first hand. New People’s Party leader and executive council member Regina Ip Lau Suk-yee dismissed the suggestion that the prospect of reform deems dimmer after the meeting, given Beijing officials' stern stance, saying overall it was still “constructive”. On Wang Guangya classifying the pan-democrats into two categories, Beijing-loyalist Federation of Trade Unions lawmaker Chan Yuen-han said it shows Beijing is not closing the door for future dialogue. “I think this meeting is meaningful … and it is like friends talking. The Beijing officials were only reiterating on their [previous stance],” Chan said. However, Chan’s FTU colleague Wong Kwok-kin said the Beijing officials’ speech sounded like “an ultimatum” for the pan-democrats. “In the past, the pan-democrats questioned that the comments were only from Beijing’s [allies], now it’s telling them that they are the central government’s view … and there will be no last-minute concessions,” Wong added. Before leaving Hong Kong for Shenzhen this morning, Legislative Council President Jasper Tsang Yok-sing called on both parties not to simply restate their opinions during the meeting or else it would be meaningless. A team of 14 pan-democrats arrived in Wuzhou guesthouse just ten minutes ahead of the meeting. Civic Party leader Alan Leong Kah-kit, who convenes an informal grouping of pan-democrats, said they were here to fulfil the lawmakers' duties - to persuade the Beijing officials in their last-ditch effort. The pan-democrats, many of them wearing yellow ties or ribbons symbolising the Occupy Central protests last year, would also hand in an open letter to officials at the meeting, he said. Some pro-establishment lawmakers arrived at the Wuzhou Guesthouse in Shenzhen as early as 8:20am. Ip Kwok-him, from the Democratic Alliance for the Betterment and Progress of Hong Kong, said his party's former chairman Tam Yiu-chung will present to Beijing officials a placard with a joint statement of 41 pro-establishment camp lawmakers printed on it. The statement was issued on April 22, hours after Hong Kong officials unveiled its political reform package. It called for pan-democrats to abandon its vow to vote down the package.