Hong Kong Marks 8th Anniversary of Handover to China

By Thomas Olivier, The Epoch Times
July 5, 2005 Updated: July 5, 2005

Friday marked eight years since the British Government handed over one of Asia's most well known ports- Hong Kong. Tens of thousands of protesters marked the July 1st Anniversary by demanding for more democracy and an end to the rule by non-elected cadres chosen by Beijing's leadership.

Over the last few years the former British colony has seen as many as half a million take to the streets in protest to eroding freedom and a weak economy.

This year, with the naming of Mr. Donald Tsang as the Chief Executive replacing the highly unpopular Mr. Tung Chee-hwa, many Hong Kong people have a "wait and see" attitude.

Mr. Tung was chosen as chief executive by Beijing in 1997 and grew increasingly unpopular with attempts to adopt the Article 23 legislation, which would have led to groups and organizations proscribed on the mainland to be outlawed by the Communist leadership on grounds of national security. This negated the "one country, two systems". The anti-subversion law, otherwise referred to as "Article 23" was dropped after Hong Kong's largest demonstrations and international condemnation.

As Beijing has reaffirmed its decision not to allow universal suffrage for the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR), Mr. Donald Tsang will have to perform a balancing act between pleasing the mainland's communist regime and the growing demand of Hong Kong people wanting for more democratic reforms while keeping the economy thriving.