Wednesday, July 15, 2020

Is democracy now illegal in Hong Kong?

Over the weekend half a million Hongkongers queued to vote in an opposition primary to choose candidates for upcoming Legislative Council elections. But the Chinese regime is now saying that its illegal.

Late on Monday Beijing’s top representatives in Hong Kong labelled the primaries “illegal” and accused organisers of colluding with foreign powers in a “serious provocation” of Hong Kong’s electoral system and to seize the private data of voters.

“The goal of organiser Benny Tai and the opposition camp is to seize the ruling power of Hong Kong and ... carry out a Hong Kong version of ‘colour revolution’,” said a spokesman for the Liaison Office, whose chief is also in charge of implementing the national security laws.

The statement came in support of Hong Kong’s chief executive, Carrie Lam, who said that democrats coordinating to win a majority and veto the government’s budget could be against the anti-sedition laws, and would be be investigated.

“If this so-called ‘primary’ election’s purpose is to achieve the ultimate goal of delivering what they call a ‘35+’ [majority seats] with the objective of objecting to, resisting every policy initiative of the Hong Kong SAR government, then it may fall into the category of subverting the state power, which is now one of the four types of offences under the new national security law,” Lam told media late on Monday.

And translating that from TyrantSpeak, "seize the ruling power of Hong Kong" means "getting elected", while "subverting the state power" means "refusing to pass legislation".

Hong Kong's basic law still allows elections. Its Legislative Council is still allowed to pass (or refuse to pass) laws. The regime is saying that the opposition using legal means to peacefully and democraticly bring about change is a crime. But if that's the case, you have to wonder why they bother with the charade of elections at all.