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Australian Institute of International Affairs - Western Australia
Hong kong protest 2

Hong Kong's "Real Return": the decimation of one country, two systems

Thu, 28 Oct 2021
18:00 - 20:00

At our October event, Dr Jie Chen will review the tumultuous political transformation of Hong Kong after the 1997 handover from Britain to China.  While Deng Xiaoping had pledged “one country, two systems” for the governance of the former British colony, the implementation of the principle was always lopsided. For example, the central government failed to honour the promise of universal  suffrage for both Chief Executive and Legislative Council.  Popular dissatisfaction, particularly manifest in the Umbrella Movement of 2014 and anti-extradition protests in 2019, triggered systematic and brutal crackdowns by the Xi Jinping leadership and led to the imposition of the National Security Law in 2020.

This presentation seeks to explain why Beijing’s approach has shifted from a relatively liberal policy towards a vehement existential assault on democratic institutions, civil society and rule of law – celebrated by mainland patriots as the achievement of the “real return” of Hong Kong. The presentation will end with some comments on Hong Kong’s future including the struggle of what remains of the democracy movement.


About the speaker

Dr. Jie Chen, originally from the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences (Beijing), is an Associate Professor teaching and researching the politics and international relations of Greater China at the discipline group of Political Science and International Relations, at the University of Western Australia. He received Ph.D from the Australian National University in 1995. He has published widely on those subjects, with his third book being The Overseas Chinese Democracy Movement: assessing China’s only open political opposition (Cheltenham, UK and Northampton, MA, USA: Edward Elgar Publishing, Dec. 2019).


Ticket Type Price
Member Ticket $10.00 Sale Ended
Non Member Ticket $20.00 Sale Ended
The University Club of Western Australia
Seminar Room 1
Entrance 1, Hackett Dr, Crawley WA 6009, Australia

PO Box 1326, South Perth, Western Australia, 6951, Australia

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