Legislators in Hong Kong have rejected a Beijing-backed election reform proposal.Most of the pro-government lawmakers walked out of the Legislative Council as the bill looked to be defeated, reports said.
Of the 37 lawmakers present, eight voted for the motion and 28 opposed. It needed at least 47 votes to pass.
The reforms would have given China the right to vet candidates in the election of the territory’s leader.
The divisive plan sparked mass protests in Hong Kong with pro-democracy activists labelling it “fake democracy”.
“This motion has not gained a two-thirds majority vote,” said Jasper Tsang, the president of the city’s Legislative Council. “I announce that the motion has been vetoed.”
The package would have granted all Hong Kong citizens the right to vote for their chief executive for the first time in 2017 , but they would only be able to vote for candidates that had been vetted by a pro-Beijing committee.
Thursday’s vote means Hong Kong’s next chief executive will be selected, as before, by a 1,200-member committee, that is currently stacked with Beijing loyalists.