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Hong Kong 'patriotism' plan sparks protest

Saturday, Jun 28, 2014 - 00:57

Hundreds of lawyers stage a silent protest in Hong Kong against plans to make 'patriotism' and 'love of the country' a requirement. Natalie Thomas reports.

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Hong Kong lawyers march through the city in protest against what they see as the potential for Chinese interference in the rule of law. As a former British colony, Hong Kong's judiciary enjoys a level of independence similar to that in the West. But Beijing raised alarm when it unveiled plans to make 'being patriotic' and "loving the country" a basic requirement for the city's administrators, including lawyers. The legal practitioners fear a requirement for patriotism could hamper judicial independence. Outside the Court of Final Appeal, they stood in silence for three minutes. (SOUNDBITE) (English) LAWYER AND LEGISLATIVE COUNCIL MEMBER, DENNIS KWOK, SAYING: "The reason why the legal profession is coming out today is because we believe that it is up to the Hong Kong people and the legal profession to defend the core values and the rule of law in Hong Kong. It is too precious, it is something too important for us to not come out and not send a very clear message to the Central People's Government. Do not damage the rule of law. Do not interfere with it. It is too precious to the Hong Kong people and our nation." Organisers said about 1,800 people attended the protest.

Hong Kong 'patriotism' plan sparks protest

Saturday, Jun 28, 2014 - 00:57

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