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Hong Kong votes in election seen as referendum on protests

The polls opened on Sunday morning for 452 seats in the city’s 18 district councils.

Supporters and candidates for the pro-government Democratic Alliance for the Betterment and Progress of Hong Kong (Ng Han Guan/AP)
Supporters and candidates for the pro-government Democratic Alliance for the Betterment and Progress of Hong Kong (Ng Han Guan/AP)

By Associated Press Reporters

Voting is under way in Hong Kong elections that have become a barometer of public support for anti-government protests now in their sixth month.

The polls opened on Sunday morning for 452 seats in the city’s 18 district councils.

The councils are largely advisory and have little power. But the election has taken on symbolic importance in the semi-autonomous Chinese territory.

A strong showing by the opposition would show that the public still supports the pro-democracy movement, even as the protests have become increasingly violent.

The ruling camp in Hong Kong and the national government in Beijing hope that the unrest and disruption to daily life will turn voters against the movement.

PA

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