British Ambassador to China Sir Robin McLaren speaks to the press before leaving Kai Tak for Beijing for another round of Sino-British talks. His negotiation team includes (back row from left) William Ehrman, Peter Ricketts, head of the Hong Kong Department, Michael Sze, Secretary for Constitutional Affairs, and Peter Lai, deputy secretary for Constitutional Affairs. Photo: SCMP Archive

Declassified files reveal disagreement between Chris Patten and British government over how to deal with China before Hong Kong handover in 1997

  • Governor Chris Patten was at odds with country’s own diplomats when it came to negotiating tactics
  • Patten’s electoral reform proposals angered Beijing, and 1993 talks ultimately collapsed
Topic |   Hong Kong political reform

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British Ambassador to China Sir Robin McLaren speaks to the press before leaving Kai Tak for Beijing for another round of Sino-British talks. His negotiation team includes (back row from left) William Ehrman, Peter Ricketts, head of the Hong Kong Department, Michael Sze, Secretary for Constitutional Affairs, and Peter Lai, deputy secretary for Constitutional Affairs. Photo: SCMP Archive
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