ABSTRACT

By far the most important developments affecting Hong Kong during 1989 were the dramatic events of May and June in Beijing. One million people took to the streets of Hong Kong to show their support for the student-led pro-democracy demonstrations. The bloody crushing of those demonstrations, the fall of Zhao Ziyang and his supporters, the rise of a hard-line faction within the Chinese leadership, and the ensuing crackdown in China all had a major impact on the territory. In Hong Kong too the Chinese leadership cracked down, charging that the British colony had become a base of subversion against the mainland. These developments determined the final form of the Basic Law, Hong Kong’s post-1997 constitution, which was adopted by the Basic Law Drafting Committee (BLDC) on February 16, 1990, and by the National People’s Congress (NPC) in Beijing on April 4, 1990.