Hong Kong’s new leadership, John Lee, was elected in a secret ballot in which he was the only contender on the ballot.
The Chinese government’s decision to select him is largely seen as an effort to strengthen its control over the city.
When pro-democracy demonstrators staged demonstrations in China in 2019, Mr. Lee was in charge of the sometimes violent repression of them.
Outgoing CEO Carrie Lam has been replaced by Mr Lee, who has been in the position since 2017.
Closed-circle committee of 1,500 people, most of whom are pro-Beijing, selects Hong Kong’s leaders – this time there was just one candidate.
In the wake of Ms Lam’s announcement that she will not seek a second term, former Chief Secretary and second-highest-ranking official Mr Lee was widely expected to succeed her.
Despite Beijing’s support, Mr. Lee is widely despised for his participation in the 2019 assault on demonstrators over a contentious extradition law.
As protests persisted, Lee stood by his legislation and was roundly criticized for authorizing the use of tear gas, rubber bullets, and other forms of force by the police to remove demonstrators.
A national security measure that criminalized political protest and dissension and curtailed the city’s authority was also supported by him in 2020.
“Stability from chaos” will be restored by the bill, according to Mr. Lee.
Analysts believe it was a hint of Beijing’s determination to concentrate on security in Hong Kong when he was promoted to the upper echelons last year.
As a result of his involvement in the law’s execution, the United States imposed penalties on him and a dozen other officials, as well as a YouTube ban on his 2022 campaign.
At a three-person demonstration before votes opened, the League of Social Democrats, the only remaining pro-democracy organization, called for the introduction of universal suffrage.
Protester Vanessa Chan told the cops present: “This is what John Lee’s new chapter looks like, a contraction of our civil freedoms.”
This action has no impact, but we don’t want Hong Kong to remain absolutely quiet, she said.
In 1997, Britain agreed to return Hong Kong to China in exchange for guarantees of civil liberties, including the right to assemble and speak freely.
Critics, on the other hand, claim that these freedoms are being lost as the Hong Kong government cracks down on dissent. People in the semi-autonomous territory are concerned that Mr. Lee’s leadership would lead to a period of greater Chinese control over the province.

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