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The Future of Hong Kong: Bumpy Road Ahead 

Rising property prices in the city mean few bookshops can afford ground-floor premises - except those backed by China’s official Liaison Office. Photograph: Jonas Gratzer/LightRocket via Getty Images

 writes: On September 28, protesters marked the anniversary of the start of last year’s Umbrella Revolution, in which 200,000 Hong Kongers took to the streets to demand genuine democracy for their city. The demonstrations ended after over two months of occupation, with the protesters failing to achieve their ends.

Although the democratic bloc in the Hong Kong legislature blocked implementation of Beijing’s preferred plan—the Chief Executive would be directly elected, but with candidates approved by a pro-Beijing nominating committee—it marked a pyrrhic victory. In rejecting what surely amounted to sham democracy, the city was left with its extant political system intact, leaving Hong Kongers no direct say in the appointment of the city’s leader.

The heady exuberance that was plain to see in last year’s demonstrations has waned. The relatively low turnout at this week’s protest suggests depleted energy among Hong Kong’s democracy activists—no doubt tied to the fact that there is no obvious means for them to pursue their reform agenda.

Even so, the once-again tranquil city-state may be in for a bumpy ride….(read more)

Source: AEI

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