With information from VOA: Thousands of people crowded shopping centers around Hong Kong, Thursday, September 12, for late-night flash mob-like displays of peaceful protest, belting out “Glory to Hong Kong”, a new protest song, in an act of resistance and support for the protestors in their months-long fight for democratic freedoms in the semi-autonomous Chinese territory.
The protesters have adopted the song, penned anonymously, as their anthem. The lyrics reflect protesters’ vow not to surrender despite a government concession to axe a proposed extradition law that sparked the summer of unrest.
For months the Chinese government has warned off other governments from commenting on the Hong Kong protests, including the UK, Canada, Australia…
Protesters in their Sunday march appealed to President Donald Trump to “stand with Hong Kong” and ensure Congress passes a bill that would impose economic sanctions and penalties on Hong Kong and mainland China officials found to suppress democracy and human rights in the city.
Hong Kong’s government expressed regret over the U.S. bill, known as the Hong Kong Human Rights and Democracy Act. It said in a statement Monday that “foreign legislatures should not interfere in any form in the internal affairs” of Hong Kong and that the city will safeguard its own autonomy.
For months, Hong Kong has been shaken by unrest that has spread across neighborhoods and class divides, attaching to one grievance and then another, sweeping as many as two million people into the streets. This particular march was organized against the smart lampposts that are being installed around the city, which protesters fear will be used for surveillance; it was also the latest vessel for the free-floating rage against Hong Kong’s police and politicians and, underpinning it all, the central government in Beijing.
The trouble began earlier this year, when Hong Kong’s government proposed a bill that would allow fugitives in the city to be extradited to mainland China. In a city already grappling unhappily with the privileges and perils of its standing as a special administrative region, the spectre of Hong Kong residents vanishing into the mainland’s opaque police and court system provoked immediate outrage. A groundswell of protests turned violent on June 12th, when street battles erupted between police and activists. The bill was then suspended indefinitely, but that wasn’t enough to quell public anger. The protesters have repeatedly returned to the streets and train stations and even Hong Kong’s airport, demanding a slate of reforms, including the total withdrawal of the extradition bill, an investigation into police use of force, and the right to elect leaders without the influence of Beijing.
Peter, who is twenty-two and recently earned a university degree in business, has a lanky frame and bushy hair that tumbles forward over his eyes. He lives with his parents and works part time as a waiter. At least, that was his life before the protests. Now he’s the de-facto leader of a cell of brawlers, none of whom knew one another before meeting in the streets this summer. They consider themselves front-line defenders of their home town and the tip of the spear against Chinese authoritarianism.
8.🇭🇰 Hong Kong
9.🇰🇷 South Korea
Chinese authorities have recognized that tourism is a key pillar of their economy, and they continue to invest heavily to improve infrastructure and standards, in addition to opening up the country with increasingly tourism-friendly policies and initiatives.
At the World Travel Market in London, Euromonitor International’s Head of Travel Caroline Bremner said: “Destinations like China are poised for a successful performance in inbound tourism, with China set to overtake France as the leading destination worldwide by 2030.”
The report estimates there will be 127 million arrivals in China each year by the end of the next decade, compared to 126 million in France and 116 million in the US.
And as household incomes and standards of living continue to rise, more Chinese are predicted to be travelling overseas in the coming decade than any other nationality.
Each year, the Economist Intelligence Unit release its annual Global Livability Index which measuring the most livable large cities in the world. In this year’s report, Vienna, Austria has succeeded in displacing Melbourne, Australia from the stop spot, which it previously held for a record seven consecutive years.
The Economist says:
The concept of liveability is simple: it assesses which locations around the world provide the best or the worst living conditions.
The Economist Intelligence Unit’s liveability rating quantifies the challenges that might be presented to an individual’s lifestyle in 140 cities worldwide. Each city is assigned a score for over 30 qualitative and quantitative factors across five broad categories of Stability, Healthcare, Culture and environment, Education and Infrastructure.
The 20 top rankings are populated with cities in Europe (9), Australia (4), Japan (2), New Zealand (1), and Canada (4).
Honolulu was the highest U.S. city at number 23. The next highest American city was Pittsburgh in 32nd position. Manchester was the highest ranked in the UK at number 35.
The Gallop organization, a research firm based in the USA, asked citizens of 142 countries about their confidence in local policing, feelings of safety while walking alone and personal experiences of crime.
Gallup interviewed more than 148,000 people for the 2018 report. Gallup’s rankings are based on residents’ own sense of security.