Hong Kong holds first elections under new "patriots only" law imposed by Beijing

·1 min read

Hong Kong's elections to choose the city's Election Committee members opened to a select group of voters on Sunday, under a new "patriots only" system imposed by China's government.

Why it matters: All candidates running to be members of the electoral college have been "vetted" by Beijing, per Reuters. They will go on to choose the Asian financial hub's next leader, approved by China's government, and some of its legislature.

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By the numbers: About 4,800, or 0.6% of Hong Kong's 7.5 million population, were allowed to vote in Sunday's elections, per AFP.

What they're saying: Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam told reporters Sunday: "The Election Committee elections are very meaningful as it is the first elections held after we have improved the electoral system to ensure that only patriots can take office."

  • Nathan Law, a leading Hong Kong pro-democracy activist granted asylum in the United Kingdom last year, told AFP the new law ensured candidates would be "puppet showmen under Beijing's entire control ... with no meaningful competition."

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