Hong Kong’s freedom has ‘disappeared’, says Taiwan on anniversary of handover – National | Globalnews.ca

Freedom in Hong Kong has “vanished” and China has failed to keep its 50-year promises without change, Taiwanese Prime Minister Su Tseng-chang said on Friday, marking the 25th anniversary of Hong Kong’s return to Chinese rule.

Chinese President Xi Jinping, on a rare visit to the world financial center on Friday, swore in Hong Kong’s new leader, former security chief John Lee, who is being sanctioned by the United States for his role in implementing a national security there.

Most of the people in Taiwan claimed by China have shown no interest in being led by Beijing, and the government has repeatedly rejected China’s offer of “one country, two systems” to rule the island, such as with Hong Kong and Macau.

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Hong Kong faces an uncertain future as the city marks 25 years under China

Speaking to reporters in Taipei, Su said he promised that life would continue as normal in Hong Kong after the handover was not completed.

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“It’s only been 25 years, and in the past the promise was 50 years unchanged. The ‘dancing will go on and the horses will go on running’ has disappeared, and even freedom and democracy have disappeared,” Su added, using a Hong Kong expression about how life would not change under Chinese rule.

“We also know that we must hold on to Taiwan’s sovereignty, freedom and democracy,” Su added. “China’s so-called ‘one country, two systems’ just hasn’t stood the test.”

The anti-government protests in Hong Kong, followed by a crackdown and the imposition of the harsh national security law, have been widely condemned in democratic Taiwan. Beijing and the Hong Kong government say the law was necessary to restore stability in the city.

Britain returned Hong Kong to Chinese rule on July 1, 1997, under a “one country, two systems” formula that guarantees broad autonomy and judicial independence not seen in mainland China.

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Critics of the government, including Western nations, accuse the authorities of trampling on those freedoms, which Beijing and Hong Kong deny.

Click to play video: 'Hong Kong marks handover to China after national security law begins'

Hong Kong marks handover to China after national security law kicks in

Hong Kong Marks Handover To China After National Security Law Kicks In – June 30, 2020

China has been increasing its military and political pressure to get Taiwan to accept Chinese sovereignty. Taiwan’s government says only the people of the island can decide its future.

Later on Friday, Taiwan’s small Chinese Unification Promotion Party held a brief rally outside the Bank of China building in Taipei to celebrate the anniversary, albeit with more police officers than party supporters in attendance.

They dispersed after less than an hour.

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