Tags: hongkong | students | protest | deal

Hong Kong Students Delay Beijing Protest, Seek Ex-Leader's Help

Friday, 07 Nov 2014 06:23 AM

Student pro-democracy protesters asked the city’s former leader Tung Chee-hwa to arrange a meeting with Chinese officials after shelving a plan to take their complaints direct to Beijing during a summit attended by world leaders including President Barack Obama.

The Hong Kong Federation of Students hopes the talks will help resolve an impasse over electoral reforms that has led to six weeks of protests. Students want China to reconsider its decision to vet candidates for the city’s 2017 leadership election, the federation said in an open letter on its Facebook page. The group hopes Tung will reply by Sunday, it said.

“The Hong Kong government not only lacks the ability to respond, but also lacks the will to tell China about the public anger,” the federation said. The details of the city’s electoral reforms should be decided by its people, it said.

Student leaders are seeking to give the protest movement fresh impetus as dissent splits the demonstrators and talks with the Hong Kong government have stalled without much progress. Tung, who led the city from 1997 to 2005 after its return to Chinese rule, has made two public appeals for the protesters to give up while urging them to resume talks with the government.

The federation wants to appeal to China directly as the Hong Kong government hasn’t represented the people’s interests, while big businesses are keen to maintain the privilege they have enjoyed since colonial rule, the group said.

Little Success

Student leaders have previously appealed to politicians to help arrange meetings with China, with little success. Pro- democracy lawmakers, who have backed the protesters, have also rejected a student proposal for them to resign en-mass and trigger a de facto referendum on the election issue.

Huang Dizhong, an assistant to Tung, said he couldn’t immediately comment when contacted. Tung on Oct. 24 said the protests risk hurting the city’s economy should they continue.

The student protesters are seeking to have public nomination for Hong Kong’s first-ever leadership election, a demand that the government has said is against the city’s laws.

The group had floated plans to send representatives to Beijing during the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum which takes place next week in the Chinese capital. Any such trip may happen after APEC, student leaders have said.

Alex Chow, the secretary general of the student federation, said the movement may last until June next year, Ming Pao newspaper reported today.


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Student pro-democracy protesters asked the city's former leader Tung Chee-hwa to arrange a meeting with Chinese officials after shelving a plan to take their complaints direct to Beijing during a summit attended by world leaders including President Barack Obama.The Hong...
hongkong, students, protest, deal
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2014-23-07
Friday, 07 Nov 2014 06:23 AM
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