AP

"Disobey and grasp your destiny" is the rallying cry as protesters settle in for a week of action to demand voting rights in their semi-autonomous nation.

As many as 13,000 college students in Hong Kong have reportedly started to stage a week-long sit-in to protest against China's failure to reform its election policies. ABC reported:

Wearing yellow ribbons, students from more than 20 universities and colleges packed into the grounds of the Chinese University of Hong Kong, where they were greeted by banners that said: "The boycott must happen. Disobey and grasp your destiny."

Pro-democracy demonstrations have been taking place in Hong Kong as an accelerated clip as of late. Hundreds of thousands of protesters turned up in July for an annual march where they sang Les Misérables.

The specific issue at the heart of the protests is what's perceived as backtracking on a promise by Chinese authorities to allow semi-autonomous Hong Kong to choose its leaders in open elections. Earlier this month, Chinese put forth a proposal that would force the candidates to be vetted by a committee before being voted upon by Hong Kongers.

The 1997 handover of Hong Kong from the British to the Chinese was supposed to bring with it the promise of "universal suffrage" and, as Lily Kuo wrote, make Hong Kong "an incubator for political reforms and elections that could be later tried on the mainland."

Instead, Chinese authorities now fear that the spirit of these protests will bring instability to mainland China instead.

This post originally appeared on The Wire, an Atlantic partner site.

MORE FROM THE WIRE:

Russia Lets the World Know It Might Be Willing to Help Bring Down ISIS

ESPN Report: Ravens Knew Full Ray Rice Story All Along

All the Reasons Democrats Are Screwed This November

About the Author

Most Popular

  1. A sign outside a storefront in Buffalo, New York.
    Environment

    Will Buffalo Become a Climate Change Haven?

    The Western New York city possesses a distinct mix of weather, geography, and infrastructure that could make it a potential climate haven. But for whom?

  2. photo: A vacant home in Oakland that is about to demolished for an apartment complex.
    Equity

    Fix California's Housing Crisis, Activists Say. But Which One?

    As a controversy over unoccupied homes in the Bay Area and Los Angeles reveals, advocates disagree about what kind of housing should be built, and where.

  3. photo: a high-speed train in Switzerland
    Transportation

    The Case for Portland-to-Vancouver High-Speed Rail

    At the Cascadia Rail Summit outside Seattle, a fledgling scheme to bring high-speed rail from Portland to Vancouver found an enthusiastic reception.

  4. photo: a woman on an electric scooter
    Transportation

    Most Electric Scooter Riders Are Men. Here's Why.

    Most users of micromobility devices like dockless scooters and e-bikes are young men. Fixing that gender gap may take more than just adding safety features.

  5. A photo of a police officer in El Paso, Texas.
    Equity

    What New Research Says About Race and Police Shootings

    Two new studies have revived the long-running debate over how police respond to white criminal suspects versus African Americans.

×