HONG KONG — More than 10,000 Hong Kong residents rallied in support of a controversial anti-subversion law Sunday, in opposition to critics who say it would roll back freedoms and rights.
Waving miniature flags, they broke into patriotic songs, clapping and cheering as prominent pro-China politicians spoke in favor of the legislation.
"The country's security is everybody's responsibility!" they chanted, sitting on the ground in the former British colony's Victoria Park.
The demonstration involved trade unions, political parties, schools, and civic and grass-roots groups and followed a massive march last Sunday by protesters who denounced the legislation as undemocratic. Organizers of last Sunday's rally estimated that crowd at 60,000, while police said 12,000 turned out initially.
Hong Kong's constitution requires it to enact such a law, which Beijing is eager to see introduced to keep hostile, foreign forces from using the Chinese territory as a base from which to subvert mainland China. Hong Kong was returned to Chinese control in 1997.