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Hong Kong's last fight is lost

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The people of Hong Kong on the weekend exercised their freedom to turn out in record numbers against yet another tightening of the Chinese Communist Party's fist around the territory. Surely Beijing cannot ride roughshod over such a mass display of dissent? According to the organisers of the mass rally, about 1 million people marched in Hong Kong's oppressive heat.

Even if the true figure is half that, it would still represent one of every 15 people in Hong Kong. That's an immense statement of concern in any city, and especially for a people who are reputed to be interested only in business, indifferent to politics.


Thousands more turned out in support in at least 29 cities in a dozen countries across the world, including in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Canberra. As The South China Morning Post reported it, "a wave of solidarity swept from Berlin to Brisbane on Sunday as demonstrators gathered around the world to support the mass protest in Hong Kong".

On the face of it, the people turned out in such force to oppose a proposed law to allow Beijing to take people across the border to stand trial in Chinese mainland courts. The people marched under the banner "No extradition to China". But in reality their concern is bigger. It is that this will be the "last fight" for Hong Kong's remaining freedoms, in the words of the former legislator Martin Lee, nicknamed Hong Kong's "father of democracy".

Because mainland China does not have an independent judiciary and citizens have no rights.........

© Brisbane Times