On the Impossibility of Hong Kong “De Jure Independence”

  • Jie Zhu
  • Xiaoshan Zhang


The oath-taking farce that took place on 12 October 2016 in the Legislative Council Building totally exposed the extremism of the pro-independence camp. On 5 March 2017, Prime Minister Li Keqiang mentioned in his work report that “Hong Kong Independence” leads to nowhere, showing the world the Chinese government’s determination against “Hong Kong Independence.” As a sort of marginalized separatist trend of thought, “Hong Kong Independence” spreads quickly in Hong Kong society, especially mid- and high schools, after the bleak ending of the “Occupy Central Movement.” This kind of ideological trend, a mixture of xenophobia, populism, racialism, and extremism, is “deadly attractive” to teenage students who know little about the society and their motherland. Nonetheless, “Hong Kong Independence” is not accepted by the mainstream of Hong Kong society, because most of Hong Kong residents do not see “Hong Kong Independence” as an option: the massive condemnation of the “Mong Kok Riot” proves that extreme moves are not appreciated by the Hong Kong society. Hereafter, in order to gain more support from the society, “Hong Kong Independence” advocates start to promote “legal and legitimate” sort of “Hong Kong Independence,” i.e., Hong Kong “De Jure Independence.” According to the proponents, the “De Jure Independence” of Hong Kong is lawful, both explicit and civilized; if the authorities decide to suppress it, they could only adopt extralegal means (Joseph Lian Yi-zheng 2016). This kind of plea, of course, has been widely criticized, a mainland scholar put forward legal strategies to cope with “De Jure Independence” of Hong Kong (Wang Liwan 2017). Whereas, it appears to the author that the so-called De Jure Independence of Hong Kong is, ultimately, a trick of doublespeak, without any chance of possibility. Revealing the impossibility of Hong Kong “De Jure Independence” helps exposing the lie of the pro-independence camp and, in the same time, contributes to constructive dialogue between Hong Kong and the mainland.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jie Zhu
    • 1
  • Xiaoshan Zhang
    • 1
  1. 1.School of LawWuhan UniversityWuhanChina

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