Hong Kong activist Joshua Wong says he’s no separatist
He said he's just seeing to a promise enshrined in the 1997 handover agreement.
Hong Kong activist Joshua Wong denied on Sept. 11 that he is a separatist.
“Three decades ago, no one expected the Soviet Union would fall. No one predicted the Berlin Wall will fall. With our pressure and determination we just hope to let the world (be) aware that the Hong Kong people deserve democracy,” Wong told journalists in Berlin, Germany, where he was invited to speak.
He added: “Some brand me as a separatist. But just let me make it clear: Hong Kong is asking for election system reform. We just hope to elect our own government. We just hope to elect the chief executive of Hong Kong.”
While there, Wong also went as far as call Hong Kong “the new Berlin’, alluding to the German capital’s divided past.
Protesters brought down the Berlin Wall separating the communist East and the democratic West.
The 22-year-old argued that Hong Kong is standing up to Beijing’s rule.
While China has warned it would crack down on separatists, Wong has asked the rest of the world to stand with him.
Keeping a promise post-1997
Wong’s comments were a reiteration of his sentiment that he just wants free elections for the former British colony.
He said he is seeing to a promise enshrined in the 1997 handover agreement between Britain and China.
Wong pointed to pledges made in the Hong Kong handover agreement.
“Before 1997, Beijing promised to let the Hong Kong people enjoy the right of free election… so we will continue our fight until the day we enjoy democracy,” he vowed.
Calling on the free world for help
In Berlin, Wong also called on the free world to do something concrete to stand with Hong Kong protesters.
Statements alone are not enough, he said.
He also acknowledged that China’s economic might may make world leaders hesitate about speaking out forcefully in favour of the protesters.
But he stressed that “we’re not seeking any world leaders or any countries to interfere in Hong Kong’s process but it’s a must for the free world to support Hong Kong’s democratisation”.
Germany, he said, should stop delivering equipment to riot police in Hong Kong.
And the United States should pass a Bill expressing support for the pro-democracy movement, he said.
The proposed law could undermine Hong Kong’s special US trade privileges.
It would mandate regular checks on whether authorities were respecting the Basic Law that underpins the city’s semi-autonomous status.
Wong is travelling to the United States on Friday, where he has been invited to speak and will seek “bipartisan support” for his cause.
“I’m not sure how many days, months or years it would take for us (to obtain) democracy and freedom,” he said.
“I hope one day, not only Hong Kong but also mainland China people can enjoy human rights and freedom.”
You can watch an interview Wong did with German DW News: