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Hong Kong marks anniversary of return to Chinese rule

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By Nicholas Wells  with Reuters, Associated Press
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Hong Kong marks 21st anniversary of return to Chinese rule
Hong Kong marks 21st anniversary of return to Chinese rule

The former British colony of Hong Kong has marked the 21st anniversary of its return to Chinese rule with a flag-raising ceremony attended by three former chief executives as well as mainland officials.

The current Chief Executive Carrie Lam expressed confidence in Hong Kong’s future, saying the "one, country, two systems" framework remains intact.

It’s supposed to guarantee a high degree of autonomy and the promise of eventual universal suffrage.

But thousands of people turned out to protest against Beijing's tightening grip over the city.

Some carried a coffin symbolising the death of democracy.

Beijing's refusal to grant full democracy to Hong Kong triggered massive street protests in 2014 and has deepened resentment towards China's growing role in the territory.