HONG KONG (AP) — Hundreds of Hong Kong lawyers dressed in black have marched in silence to protest a recent Beijing policy statement they say undermines the Asian financial hub’s rule of law.
Friday’s demonstration is the latest sign of growing anger over mainland China’s expanding influence over Hong Kong, which was promised a high degree of autonomy after it returned to Beijing’s control 17 years ago.
Under the principle of “one country, two systems,” Hong Kong is guaranteed Western-style civil liberties and independent courts, which is not the case on the mainland.
Beijing triggered a massive backlash when it released a policy statement earlier this month outlining its interpretation of the “one country, two systems” principle. Hong Kong’s legal community fumed over a requirement that judges be patriotic.