Hong Kong's voters give Lam bloody nose in local elections
Hong Kong voters turned out in record numbers yesterday for district elections, with early results showing pro-democracy candidates triumphing over those who have sided with Beijing in the six-month-long protests.
The election is widely viewed as a test of public support for pro-Beijing chief executive Carrie Lam's handling of the protests that plunged the Asian financial hub into crisis.
Results started to trickle in after midnight and showed at least a dozen pro-democracy wins, including former student leaders. Among them is a candidate who replaced Joshua Wong, the activist who was the only person to be barred from running in the election. Jimmy Sham, who was bloodied in a hammer attack last month, also triumphed.
Junius Ho, a pro-Beijing politician stabbed while campaigning this month, was among those who lost.
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The poll for delegates on the lowest tier of government - which has never had so much attention - is seen as a barometer of the six months of protests that at times crippled the city businesses and transport.
A record 4.1 million people registered to vote in the election, which normally records a turnout rate of about 40pc.
By 8am, long queues had already formed at polling stations, while government data showed nearly three million people had voted - a turnout rate of 70pc. About 1.47 million voted in the last district elections four years ago, which was itself a record.
In the bitterly divided city, many said they would vote based on their views of the political turmoil.
Although district councils deal with some mundane issues, they have a say in the selection of the city's chief executive, who is not directly elected by the public.
If the pro-democracy camp gains control, it could secure six seats in the parliament. (© Daily Telegraph, London)