军舰

China limits Hong Kong parliament to 'patriots'

Release time:2021-03-30 Publisher:South Asia Development

China has passed sweeping changes to Hong Kong's electoral rules which will tighten its control over the city.

The number of directly elected seats in parliament has been cut almost by half, and prospective MPs will first be vetted by a pro-Beijing committee to ensure their loyalty to the mainland.

The aim is to ensure only "patriotic" figures can run for positions of power.

Critics warn it will mean the end of democracy, as it removes all opposition from the city parliament.

Beijing's rubber-stamp parliament first approved the plan during the National People's Congress (NPC) meetings earlier in March.

On Tuesday, Chinese state media reported that the country's top decision-making body, the NPC Standing Committee, voted unanimously to pass it. This amends the annexes of Hong Kong's mini-constitution, the Basic Law.