Hong Kong delays ballot by a yr as virus rages


HONG KONG, July 31

Hong Kong chief Carrie Lam on Friday postponed the September 6 election for the town’s legislature for a yr due to a spike in Covid instances, dealing a blow to the pro-democracy opposition hoping to make beneficial properties within the vote.

The opposition had aimed to trip a wave of resentment of a brand new nationwide safety legislation that Beijing imposed on the town on June 30 to win a majority within the Legislative Council, the place half the seats are instantly elected with the opposite half stuffed principally by pro-Beijing appointees.

The postponement comes after 12 pro-democracy candidates had been disqualified from working within the ballot, for causes, together with perceived subversive intentions, opposition to the brand new safety legislation and campaigning to win a legislation-blocking majority.

Lam, who stated the election can be held on September 5 subsequent yr, advised reporters the choice was probably the most tough she had made in seven months and it was aimed toward safeguarding individuals’s well being.

“We have 3 million voters going out in one day across Hong Kong, such flow of people would cause high risk of infection,” Lam stated. Beijing-backed Lam stated she needed to invoke an emergency legislation to make the postponement and no political concerns had been concerned within the choice. China’s parliament would determine learn how to fill the legislative vacuum brought on by it.

The ballot would have been the previous British colony’s first official vote since Beijing imposed the safety legislation to sort out what China broadly defines as secession, subversion and terrorism, with punishment of as much as life in jail. — Reuters



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