Saturday, December 19, 2009

On December 19

On this day in ...
... 1984 (25 years ago today), in Beijing, British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher and Chinese Premier Zhao Ziyang signed the Joint Sino-British Declaration, which provided that Hong Kong would be returned to China in 1997, thus "end[ing] 155 years of British rule in the colony" and "launch[ing] a new era in trade and diplomacy between the two countries." The transfer did go forward as planned, although in wake of the 1989 Tiananmen massacre England "gran[ted] British passports to 50,000 Hong Kong heads of families, buil[t] a new international airport, and introduc[ed] a Bill of Rights."

(Prior December 19 posts are here and here.)

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