Child of the Motherland

To the political opposition in Hong Kong, the biggest issue is universal suffrage, whereby the Chief Executive and all of the Legislative Council are elected by popular vote. Yet Hong Kong's political system was never meant to be a carbon copy of any sovereign democracy. Unlike other colonies, Hong Kong did not become independent. It became part of a nation—China—and was given not full but a "high degree" of autonomy, under the principle of "one country, two systems." The level of this autonomy is set out in the Basic Law, Hong Kong's constitution under China.

Under the Basic...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now

Subscribe
Subscribe

Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!