'Umbrella revolution' defeated

Updated: 2014-12-12 07:48

(China Daily)

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Hong Kong police on Thursday took long-awaited action to clear the largest stronghold of the illegal "Occupy Central" campaign. The successful clearing operation officially spelled defeat for the "umbrella revolution" - the Hong Kong version of the "color revolution".

The political adventure, supported by outside forces that have been scheming to counter the rise of China, went against the overall interests of Hong Kong society and the nation - as well as the will of Hong Kong residents. Nearly 83 percent of respondents told an opinion poll in late November that they wanted the protesters to end their actions immediately.

The "Occupy" movement has inflicted great damage on the Special Administrative Region. Aside from causing huge economic losses, it has also torn the SAR's social fabric apart. Even worse, it has attacked established beliefs about the rule of law - one of the cornerstones of the city's stability and prosperity.

But every cloud has a silver lining. Some misinterpretations of, or misconceptions about, the "One Country, Two systems" principle were straightened out during the protests.

By now, Hong Kong people know better that the "high level of autonomy" doesn't mean full autonomy, and nor is "Hong Kong people governing Hong Kong" in conflict with the central government's comprehensive jurisdiction over the SAR.

It has also become clearer that the "One Country, Two Systems" principle has been designed not only to maintain stability and prosperity in the SAR. It is also intended to safeguard the sovereignty, security and development of the whole Chinese nation.

This explains well why constitutional reforms in the SAR, including electoral reforms for the selection of its chief executive, must be conducted in strict accordance with the Basic Law - the constitutional foundation of the "One Country, Two Systems" principle.

Most important of all, Hong Kong people realize that the Basic Law must be implemented both in letter and in spirit. After all, the SAR's interests can be protected only when the country's interests are safeguarded.

The defeat of the "umbrella revolution" has also sent a clear message to hostile forces - both local and overseas: On matters of principle, the central government will never make any concessions. And in a free and prosperous civil society such as Hong Kong, there is simply no soil for political schemers to advance their agenda.