Chinese president heckled during speech
China's president Hu Jintao was heckled by pro-democracy activists during a speech he was making in Hong Kong swearing in that island's new leader.
It has been 15 years since Hong Kong was returned to Chinese rule by the British. To mark this anniversary thousands are marching on the streets to demonstrate against the growing economic inequality and the lack of democratic development in their city. The new leader of Hong Kong 57-year-old Leung Chun-ying has promised to address the economic concerns of the city of 7 million stating he will "uphold justice, protest the rights of the people, safeguard the rule of law, clean government, freedom and democracy, which are among the core values of Hong Kong, and take an inclusive approach towards different opinions and views."
According to reports of the heckling incident (by The Guardian
, The Global and Mail
and Global Post
) it occurred when one of the guests of the inauguration interrupted the Chinese president as he was about to start his speech, the heckler waved a flag and called upon China's leaders to condemn the infamous crackdown on the pro-democratic insurrection in Tiananmen Square, Beijing in 1989.
Following the arrest of the heckler the Chinese premier commenced his speech where he claimed -- contrary to the claims of the pro-democracy campaigners -- that residents of the city have more democratic rights than before.
China and Hong Kong are one country, but have two different systems, Hong Kong is a quasi-democratic capitalistic financial hub whilst mainland China 'proper' is a communistic state.
Amidst fears of dwindling democracy and more control and influence over their lives by the mainland, residents of Hong Kong also fear the influence the city's billionaires have over government officials, and are fearful of the rising income inequality.