Courtesy: Channel News Asia
Twenty-three pan-democratic lawmakers described the lengthy document submitted to Beijing as a chronology of events that lacks a solution to the political stalemate in Hong Kong.
Hong Kong has delivered an official report on the democracy movement to Beijing. Chief Secretary Carrie Lam had suggested creating the report during talks with student leaders at the height of the Occupy movement last October.
The document runs at more than 200 pages long and is entitled ‘Report on the Recent Community and Political Situation in Hong Kong’. It is a report of public sentiment in the territory, and was submitted to China’s Hong Kong and Macau Affairs Office.
When student leaders met the Hong Kong government last October, protesters had hoped the report would persuade Beijing to change its mind to allow Hong Kong people to freely nominate its own candidates – rather than via a nominating committee – for the 2017 Chief Executive elections.
That has not happened, and activists are still camped out at the Legislative Council Building. According to the government, the document is a factual report on events from August 31 to December 15 – the day police had cleared the last Occupy protest site in Causeway Bay. It does not include any conclusions to the issue.
But a separate statement to the media did note that divergent views in the community exist on how to elect the next chief executive. Twenty-three pan-democratic lawmakers have criticised the report, describing it as a chronology of events that lacks a solution to the political stalemate in Hong Kong.
Labour Party Chairman Lee Cheuk-Yan said: “We hope that Beijing will not read this report. Instead they will read our report submitted a few days ago to the Central Government, reflecting the real sentiment of the people of Hong Kong. And we believe that the only way to resolve the conflict is to restart the whole political reform process.”
In response to the report, the Hong Kong and Macau Affairs Office said it understands that various communities have differing views but that Beijing’s decision on political reform is conducive to national interests and that “its legal effect is beyond doubt”.
The debate on political reform is back on the centrestage on Wednesday when the government starts its second round of public consultation. No one is expecting a smooth ride.
As the administration faces the tough task of coming out with a proposal that needs to win the support of two-thirds in the Legislative Council, the pro-democrats have already promised to veto the Bill.