Protesters in Hong Kong gathered in front of the British Consulate and chanted the British national anthem.The protesters handed a consulate petition condemning what they called China's intervention in Hong Kong and violating the system of self-government. Participants in today's protests raised the flags of the United States, Japan and Australia.
Al-Jazeera's Hong Kong correspondent Nasser Abdul-Haq said today's demonstrations were huge, with an estimated one million participants. The demonstrators said today's demonstrations coincided with the celebration of World Democracy Day.
The correspondent pointed out that the demonstrators raised the flags of several countries today believe that they may have an impact and support in meeting their demands for democracy, including the United States, Britain, Australia and Japan.
The international community
Demonstrators told the island's correspondent that they wanted to send a message to the international community and world powers that Hong Kong must remain as democratic as it was under British rule, saying the island had begun to lose its democratic system since China handed over the island from Britain and the central government interfered in Hong Kong's affairs.
Protests have been going on in Hong Kong since June after the local government introduced a bill to extradite suspects to China, but protesters' demands have expanded to demand the maintenance of a democratic system against China's central government interventions.
Although the Hong Kong government withdrew the bill, protests continued, while China accused outside powers of fueling unrest on the island.
Demonstrators see the withdrawal of the extradition bill to the Beijing authorities as a bait, and demand the fulfillment of all five of the demands achieved by only one.
The rest of the protesters' demands are reflected in the establishment of a committee to investigate security violations against demonstrators, release all detainees during the demonstrations, stop describing the demonstrations as riots, maintain the island's democratic system, ensure free elections, and prevent interference by the Chinese central government in the election.
The Sino-British Joint Declaration signed in 1984 sets out the future of Hong Kong after it returned to China in 1997 under the "one country, two systems" formula, which guarantees the freedoms not enjoyed by the rest of China.
Beijing says it is committed to the "one country, two systems" arrangement, denies interference and says the city is an internal Chinese issue.