Timeline: Hong Kong, 1997-2007
July 1, 1997: After 156 years of British rule, China resumes sovereignty over Hong Kong. As residents celebrate in the streets, Britain's Prince Charles and Chinese President Jiang Zemin hold an official midnight ceremony at the city's brand new convention center, above, during which Jiang hails the handover as "a victory for the universal cause of peace and justice." Immediately afterwards, Prince Charles and Hong Kong's last British governor, Chris Patten, depart the former colony aboard the royal yacht Britannia. As morning breaks, thousands of Chinese troops stream across the border to take up their new posts in Hong Kong.