HONG KONG—Residents celebrated Taiwan’s National Day on Oct. 10 in a show of support for what they call “the real China.”
People gathered across the city in a show of solidarity with Taiwanese people.
“One country… it is Republic of China [Taiwan], not the evil People’s Republic of China,” a Hong Kong citizen in attendance, who only gave his last name of Loung, told NTD.
This year marks the 108th anniversary of the founding of the Republic of China, which now resides in Taiwan.
“Give a very strong message to the evil communists,” said Loung. “We will not stop struggling for freedom.”
Another citizen who only gave his first name Ken said he hopes that one day, Hongkongers can secure the right to hold genuine direct elections, free from the influence of Beijing. Currently, the candidates to run for the city leader position are handpicked by Beijing. Then, an electoral committee comprising of mostly pro-Beijing elites vote in the leader.
“I just want that we have freedom of rights… freedom to join the different assemblies,” said Ken. “This is one thing I think the Hongkongers want to treasure.”
He hopes Hong Kong can hold democratic elections like Taiwan one day in the future. “I found that Taiwan, every people there have the right to vote for their president,” said Ken.
In the evening, citizens continued to rally in support of Taiwan.
“We regard the Republic of China, Taiwan, as the real China, rather than the PRC [People’s Republic of China],” said Panzer Chan, a Hong Kong citizen. “And also Taiwan is a democratic country, so we support Taiwan.”
Hongkongers have staged mass protests since June against Beijing’s growing encroachment on local affairs, stemming from an extradition bill that they believe is stifling Hong Kong’s freedoms, which were guaranteed under a “one country, two systems” formula after the territory reverted from British to Chinese rule in 1997.
“I think if you don’t stand out today, maybe we might not have any chance to fight much for democracy anymore,” said Daphne, a young Hongkonger at the rally. “So we need to come out before the communist government really takes over Hong Kong.”
Citizens say they will continue to protest until the government answers all their demands, including for free elections and an independent inquiry into police use of force during demonstrations.
“No, they won’t stop us,” said Tommy, a citizen attending the event. “We will not [be afraid] of them.”