April Fifth Action

April Fifth Action

April Fifth Action or AFAG (zh-tp|t=四五行動|p=Sì-Wǔ xíngdòng) is a group named after the first Tiananmen incident of April 5, 1976. It is a small socialist group in the Hong Kong. While the organization's Chinese name translates as "April Fifth Action", English language media in Hong Kong usually refer to it as the April Fifth Action Group.

Party beliefs

The group believe that without a democratic China, it would be impossible to have a democratic Hong Kong.Wing-kai Chiu, Stephen. Lui, Tai-Lok. The Dynamics of Social Movement in Hong Kong. [2000] (2000). Hong Kong University Press. ISBN 962209497X.] The most famous member of the group is Leung Kwok-hung, better known locally as "Longhair"; who has described himself in interviews as a Trotskyist. The group is aligned with the pro-democracy camp in its opposition to the governments of China and the HKSAR. The group calls for more democracy and a shift of power away from the government to the people.

Protest technique

The group is well known for its aggressive and civil disobedience-style actions to protest against the governments of China and Hong Kong during celebrations and visits of state leaders, often resulting in confrontations with the police. Its members have also been prosecuted for disrupting meetings of the Legislative Council of Hong Kong (LegCo).


SomeFact|date=June 2007 have also pointed out the irony of a Marxist group allying with democratic parties. OthersFact|date=June 2007 have instead pointed out that these parties unite in one common goal of being slightly anarchist in opposing what they perceive to be growing Chinese government control over Hong Kong. This is because they stress the "two systems" part more in the one country, two systems rule enforced in Hong Kong after the 1997 handover back to China. They also promote a welfare state, in contrast to the (ultra-)capitalistic one now in place in Hong Kong.

Censorship in Beijing

The group have held a number of protests. One example is the June 1, 1997 protest which drew a crowd of 5,000 people in Hong Kong going from Chater Garden to the New China News Agency. The group was blocked off by the Hong Kong police, and did not succeed in presenting a petition to the news office. While the event led Hong Kong news headlines, China's main CCTV station promoted the opposite propaganda on the mainland by featuring children in Wan Chai waiving PRC flags. Critics have questioned the effectiveness of the group, since Beijing has continued to censor news of the group's activities entirely in the mainland [Knight, Alan. Nakano, Yoshiko. [1999] (1999). Reporting Hong Kong: Foreign Media and the Handover. Palgrave Macmillan. ISBN 031222429X] .


The group's most famous member, Leung Kwok-hung unsuccessfully contested both the 2000 LegCo election and 2003 District Council elections. He considered the latter battle a victory because of the number of votes he got in a district which traditionally supports pro-Beijing candidates. He finally succeeded in the 2004 LegCo election and became the first member of the April Fifth Action in the Legislative Council. His election was widely viewed as a protest vote against the unpopular administration of then Chief Executive Tung Chee-hwa.

Leung has been a controversial LegCo member since he refused to take the standard oath which all legislators must take, and instead recited his own expanded version. Leung Kwok-hung has gained most of his voter popularity owing to his very strong, if not radical, stance on issues, criticising the indecision and inefficiency that paralysed the Hong Kong government due to weak leadership under Tung Chee-hwa.


External links

* [http://members.hknet.com/~tllau/ Web page of April Fifth Action]

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