Chinese Organizations in North America: An Open Letter to the Honorable Prime Minster Mr. Stephen Harper, the House of Commons and Fellow Canadians

We are urging you to monitor the constitutional development in Hong Kong and to press the Chinese Government to honor their promises to the people of Hong Kong on “One Country Two Systems” stated in the Sino-British Joint Declaration of 1984 and the constitution of Hong Kong, the Basic Law.

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Northern California Hong Kong Club: Call on Pro-democracy Legco Member to Veto NPC Fake Democracy Proposal

Issued on 31 August 2014

On Sept 1, NCHKC sent letters to the following US officials to urge them to speak out for Hong Kong people:

  • Vice President Joe Biden
  • Representative Nancy Peloci, House leader for Democrat,
  • Senator Sherrod Brown, Chairman of Congressional-Executive Commission on China
  • Representative Christopher Smith, Co-chairman of Congressional-Executive Commission on China

We salute the tremendous courage shown by the people of Hong Kong who will be starting a series of peaceful resistance actions in defiance of Beijing’s denial of their democratic rights.

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Aug 30, 2014

Developing: Students’ Strike

  • Responses to students’ strikes from 11 universities and colleges in Hong Kong: Summary
  • SCMP report: HKU Vice Chancellor: We support freedom of speech and we support staff and students to express opinions whether they are in favour of Occupy Central or against.
  • SCMP report: PolyU won’t punish those who cut classes to join Occupy Central
  • 2 Student Unions have issued students’ strike declarations

Responses to students’ strike from 11 universities and colleges in Hong Kong

Updated on 7 Sept 2014 

The University of Hong Kong
Students can apply for personal leaves for participating in social movements. 

The Chinese University of Hong Kong
Students can apply for personal leaves for participating in social movements. 

The Hong Kong Institute of Education
Students can apply for personal leaves for participating in social movements.

The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology
Students can apply for personal leaves for participating in social movements. 

The Hong Kong Polytechnic University
Students are free to go on strike.  Teachers who intend to go on strike need to apply for leaves and arrange their substitutes.  Neither teachers nor students will be punished for going on strike. 

City University of Hong Kong
Teachers and students should discuss and make alternative class arrangements.

Lingnan University
Teachers and students should discuss and make alternative class arrangements.

Chu Hai College of Higher Education
Students must apply for leave. Faculty members are required to inform the school and arrange make-up classes. Students are not encouraged to be absent for a long period of time. 

Hang Seng Management College
Students with less than 80% attendance will not be allowed to sit for examinations. However, it is within the teacher’s discretion to settle the matter.

Hong Kong Shue Yan University
Students should apply for leave, but those who are absent from 6 classes or more without providing acceptable reasons to the school will not be allowed to sit for the final examination. Teaching staff who are absent from work will also need to give explanations to the school and arrange make-up classes with students.

Hong Kong Baptist University
Students who are reported to be absent in more than 15% of class on a certain subject without approval will not be allowed to sit for the examinations of that subject. Teachers need to obtain prior approval from chairman of department for absence from school and make appropriate arrangements.

Open University
Students and faculty are NOT encouraged to participate in students’ strike. If students and faculty will be punished if found to have violated code of conduct.

Exam Review: Hong Kong’s Occupy Central with Love and Peace

Justin Tse | 29 August 2014 | Religon. Ethnicity. Wired.

Things are heating up over there in Hong Kong over the movement known as Occupy Central with Love and Peace. There’s going to be a rally on August 31 to deliberate over what sorts of acts of civil disobedience the movement will take in response to Beijing’s newly proposed framework for Hong Kong’s electoral reform. This is because while the Occupy Central movement put forward a proposal for Chief Executive candidates to be determined by civil nomination, Beijing has de facto rejected the proposal by insisting on choosing the candidates. Universal suffrage, however, seems to be still on the table. All of this comes on the heels of an anti-Occupy Central rally that was held in Central, as well as several seemingly political investigations of pro-democracy legislators. To add even more alarm in terms of the parallels to the Beijing Spring in Tiananmen Square in 1989, armoured vehicles have been reported to be entering Hong Kong from China.

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Beijing’s ‘knock-on-the-door’ warning to Hong Kong’s democracy movement

Patrick Brown | 29 August 2014 | CBC News

According to Nicolas Bequelin of Human Rights Watch, “The rule of law in Hong Kong has eroded faster in the past few months than it had over the whole period from 1997 to 2014.” And there are probably two main reasons for this.

Consolidating his power after almost two years in office, President Xi Jinping has spoken of the need for a firmer hand with Hong Kong, partly out of concern that allowing greater democracy there might lead to demands for the same in other parts of China.

The regime has also been caught off-guard by the strength of the campaign for democracy known as Occupy Central with Love and Peace, which participated in a huge march on July 1, the anniversary of the handover.

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To Save the Rich, China Ruins Hong Kong

Nisid Hajari | 29 August 2014 | Bloomberg

The cost of defending the plutocrats is high. A Chinese government white paper released in June appeared to raise doubts about the continued independence of Hong Kong’s judiciary and the city’s commitment to the rule of law, which have been pillars of its success. Raids this week on high-profile opposition supporter Jimmy Lai were hardly more reassuring. While democracy activists may not be able to shut down the central business district, as they’ve threatened, even low-level protests will draw weeks of unwanted international attention. Moderate Hong Kong parliamentarians say they won’t support Beijing’s proposals; as a result, they may fall short of the two-thirds majority needed to pass the local legislature.

Sooner or later, Chinese leaders are going to have to get more comfortable with the idea of autonomy in outlying regions. In Xinjiang, which has been battered by a series of vicious terrorist attacks, the suppression of moderate voices has only enhanced the appeal of extremist groups. Hong Kong should have been an ideal test case for greater openness — a stable, ethnically Chinese enclave that is, yes, more interested in making money than in making trouble. So far Beijing is failing.

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United Front absorbs ICAC, and other stupidity

29 Aug 2014 | Big Lychee

In the past, Hong Kong has usually had moderate politicians, reasonable media voices and neutral bureaucrats and business people with the wisdom and good humour to maintain some basic cohesion. Even after the Article 23 uproar, or Donald Tsang’s anti-democrat tantrums, some sort of civility returned. This time feels different. In its attempts to assert control, Beijing has polarized the city, and it looks permanent. If they’re going to use law enforcement agencies for political persecution stunts, what’s the point of being moderate and constructive?

Maybe Beijing will realize its tactics are overkill and counterproductive. Otherwise, the city is going to end up more alienated, more disgruntled, and less governable than ever.

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Human Rights Watch: China: Stop Interfering in Peaceful Hong Kong Protests

29 August 2014 | Human Rights Watch

The Chinese central government and Hong Kong authorities should not impede peaceful protests or other means of peaceful expression, Human Rights Watch said today. China’s top legislature is set to formally announce its decision on Hong Kong’s political reform on August 31, 2014, and the expected announcement is likely to trigger large protests.

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Cartoon on ICAC investigation on Jimmy Lai by Rebel Pepper

28 August 2014 | 变态辣椒 @remonwangxt

据说香港廉政公署今天一大早把黎智英先生堵在家里,我觉得香港再继续赤化下去的话,廉政公署变成“党政公署”的那天也不远了。 I heard Hong Kong’s ICAC went to Jimmy Lai’s place early in the morning. I feel that if communist encroachment in Hong Kong continues, it won’t take long for the ICAC to become a CCP agency.

Original

Civil Disobedience 101 Hong Kong Style

Rich Scotford | 26 Aug 2014 | China Op-eds

It looks increasingly likely that some form of civil disobedience campaign will take place in Hong Kong in the near future. Political reform is now turning into a high-stakes game pitting the desires of significant proportions of the Hong Kong public, who wish for a credible democracy, against the might and coercive strength of the Communist Party of China (CPC), which is used to getting its own way, eventually.

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The Counterfeit Protest: Hong Kong’s pro-Beijing rally against Occupy Central

26 August 2014 | Coconuts TV

A pro-Beijing march remonstrating the Occupy Central rally, which could take place at the end of this month, was held on Sunday, August 17th. Local media reported that many pro-Beijing marchers were paid to attend the anti-Occupy Central march, with free transport, lunches and other incentives. Some protesters allegedly did not even know why they were there.

Benny Tai: The rationale of Occupy Central is the pursuit of justice

Original published in Apple Daily on 26 August 2014: Read original
Translation on 28 August 2014

The real problem is not the alarm bell, but rather the fire.  It is still burning out there even without any alarm.  The loud alarm goes on just because of the fire, which is the root cause of the problem.  Those who ring the alarm bells, which are very loud indeed, are not trying to create disturbances but are actually trying to warn the occupants instead of fleeing himself.  What is really ridiculous is that the determination, courage and decisiveness are not used to put off the fire but rather used against the one who notices the fire and rings the alarm bells.  I could not help but ask: “What the heck is the rationale behind?”

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Hong Kong’s political future

26 August 2014 | Khaleej Times

The principle of ‘one country, two systems’ has come full circle.

These days Beijing is engrossed with the puzzle of how to handle Hong Kong, as universal suffrage demands pick momentum. The pro-democracy Occupy Central movement is out on the streets of the downtown calling for reforms and an electoral system that shouldn’t be censured by Chinese authorities. The issue is all about electing a new chief executive for the former British colony in 2017 through a popular vote. The fear that China will try to influence the outcome by screening candidates has stirred an unending debate. Activists want no restrictions on the nomination of candidates.

The final decision, per se, rests with the National People’s Congress, which is in session in Beijing. It is widely believed that the politburo will not budge from its stated positions and would like the candidates to be vetted before they stand for public office in Hong Kong. The Congress also wants the new chief executive to be a ‘patriot’ and must not oppose the Mainland government. With such ifs and buts at work, the plenary session of policy-makers in Beijing will not be in a position to scale down soaring tensions in its offshore territory. Things as they stand seem to be heading towards a showdown as hundreds and thousands of activists are camping on the streets to force the authorities to accept their demands.

If Beijing remains adamant on screening the candidates through a nominating committee, it will be end of the road for the hard-earned consensus that Hong Kongers had experienced since the historic transition. China has to take into consideration the fact that the world has changed for good, and it is no more the Tiananmen Square era where demonstrators can be crushed under the wheels of army tanks. China’s self-invented social media is more than enough to act as a bulwark against the dictates of communism.