Nick Clegg has criticised his Conservative coalition partners for failing to provide backing for democratic reforms in Hong Kong.
After a meeting on Tuesday with two of the former British colony’s leading democracy activists, the deputy prime minister reiterated his backing for a transition to universal suffrage in the city.
However, a person close to the Liberal Democrat leader said Mr Clegg was astonished to find himself alone among the country’s political leadership in doing so.
“Nick is pretty nonplussed to find himself as the only leading member of the coalition government prepared to uphold the human rights commitments made to Hong Kong by two leading Conservatives – John Major and Chris Patten,” the person said.
“The Conservative leadership have become so deferential in their attitude to China that they will not give these assurances themselves.”
In an interview with the Financial Times on Monday, Anson Chan and Martin Lee, the activists who met Mr Clegg, accused the UK of turning its back on Hong Kong.
Mr Lee, a barrister and founder of the city’s Democratic party, said British policy was dictated by “more trade, more business”.
Ms Chan, former head of the territory’s civil service under the British, rejected the findings of a recent UK report on Hong Kong that said “Hong Kong’s unique constitutional framework has worked well”.
Downing St said on Tuesday it would not comment on the matter.
这名人士表示：“尼克十分困惑地发现，在联合政府的领导人中，他是唯一一个准备维护对香港人权承诺的人，而这一承诺是由两位重要的保守党人——约翰?梅杰(John Major)和彭定康(Chris Patten)做出的。”
在接受英国《金融时报》周一的采访时，与克莱格进行了会晤的民主活动人士陈方安生(Anson Chan)和李柱铭(Martin Lee)指责英国背弃香港。
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