Hong Kong Holds Poll on Reforms

Polling stations across Hong Kong opened Sunday in an unofficial referendum on democratic reform in the former British colony, a move that has angered Beijing.

Nearly 600,000 votes have been cast in three days of online and telephone voting that began on Friday. Chinese Communist Party authorities have declared the referendum illegal and without effect, as has the government of Hong Kong.

People vote at a polling center for an unofficial referendum on democratic reform in Hong Kong on June 22, 2014. /AP People vote at a polling center for an unofficial referendum on democratic reform in Hong Kong on June 22, 2014. /AP

The Occupy Central movement, which organized the balloting, opened actual voting stations on Sunday, after a massive cyber attack on their voting website last week. The voting period was also extended until June 29.

The referendum proposes three options for citizens to choose who can run for the chief executive office of Hong Kong. Currently, candidates are chosen by a pro-Beijing committee.

Some information for this report was provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.

VOA News / Jun. 23, 2014 08:15 KST