Protesters wave flags that read “Hong Kong Independence” during a rally in Hong Kong, Sunday, Jan. 12, 2020. More than a thousand people attended a Sunday rally in Hong Kong to urge people and governments abroad to support the territory’s pro-democracy movement and oppose China’s ruling Communist Party. (AP Photo/Vincent Yu)

Hong Kong rally seeks voting rights, international support

Some are looking at how life is in Taiwan

More than a thousand people attended a rally in Hong Kong on Sunday to urge people and governments abroad to support the city’s pro-democracy movement and oppose China’s ruling Communist Party.

Representatives of allied activist groups from Canada, Europe and Taiwan made remarks and led the attendees in chants of “Fight for freedom! Stand with Hong Kong!”

Speakers also celebrated the results of Saturday’s presidential election in Taiwan that saw the Democratic Progressive Party’s Tsai Ing-wen voted to a second term in a landslide.

Months of anti-government protests in Hong Kong, a semi-autonomous Chinese territory, have driven home to many in Taiwan the contrast between their democratically governed island and authoritarian mainland China.

“The Taiwanese demonstrated how peaceful it could be if we have democracy,” said rally organizer Ventus Lau.

“And we have to understand the Taiwanese fought hard in previous decades so that they can have this power today,” Lau said. “So if we want to have democracy like them, we need to fight hard and to continue our fight with the Communist Party.”

A former British colony, Hong Kong was returned to China in 1997. Under the framework of “one country, two systems,” the city enjoys greater democratic rights than those on the mainland, but protesters say those freedoms have been steadily eroding under Chinese President Xi Jinping.

A 20-year-old student at the rally with the surname Lee said Hong Kong citizens should have the right to choose their leader.

“The current chief executive (Carrie Lam) is not elected by all Hong Kong citizens,” Lee said. “So even though Hong Kong citizens want the chief executive to resign or do anything, the chief executive can just ignore our voices, and just listen to what Beijing said.”

Universal suffrage is among the five demands protesters are advocating, along with an independent investigation into alleged police brutality.

READ MORE: Pro-democracy camp wins Hong Kong elections in landslide victory

Alice Fung, The Associated Press


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Second earthquake in two days strikes near Agassiz

A 2.6-magnitude recorded Saturday morning

Province bringing 421 new affordable childcare spaces to Fraser Valley

Supporting early childhood educators and creating spaces go hand in hand, minister says

New waste system rolling out across Hope Feb. 10

Bins began arriving at homes around Hope this week

Rude awakening: 1.6-magnitude earthquake rouses residents from their sleep

The quake was detected 3 km east-northeast of Agassiz

‘Presumptive case’ of coronavirus in Canada confirmed by Ontario doctors

Man in his 50s felt ill on his return to Canada from Wuhan, China

People knowingly take fentanyl so make policy changes to reduce harm: B.C. study

Dr. Jane Buxton, an epidemiologist at the centre, says drug users need more resources,

‘My heart is going to bleed’: Bodies brought back to Canada following Iran plane crash

Remains of Sahar Haghjoo, 37, and her eight-year-old daughter, Elsa Jadidi, were identified last weekend

UBC grad and sister killed in Iran plane crash had bright futures ahead, close friend says

Asadi-Lari siblings Mohammad Hussein and Zeynab were two of 57 Canadians aboard downed Flight PS752

Surrey tells Uber to cease operations in city, but company ‘respectfully’ declines

Ridesharing company told to stop operating within the city by 9 p.m. Jan. 24

Coronavirus concerns cause cancellation of Langley Lunar New Year celebration

Close to 1,000 were expected to attend the annual Live In Langley event on Saturday

BCLC opens novelty bet on Harry and Meghan moving to the west coast

Meanwhile, real estate agency points to four possible homes for the family

Canada slips in global corruption ranking in aftermath of SNC-Lavalin scandal

The country obtained a score of 77, which places it at the top in the Americas

Most Read