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According to a December survey, only 17 percent of Hong Kong residents consider themselves Chinese citizens. And with sentiment at a 12 year low, some residents in the Special Administrative Region are protesting what they consider unwanted influence on their culture by people from the Mainland... and an influx of cars, as well.
On Sunday, yet another protest broke out in Hong Kong against mainland Chinese. This time, the debate is over a new policy that will allow cars from the Mainland into Hong Kong.
Three hundred people were part of the protest, arguing that the policy would lead to pollution, congestion and safety hazards. The plan is set to begin in March, where 50 cars a day will be allowed into Hong Kong. The number is expected to increase, as a bridge is being built from Hong Kong to connect to its neighboring province of Guangdong.
Hong Kong protestors fear the influx of Chinese people will change their environment and culture.
[Roy Tam, Green Store President]:
"We Hong Kong people are afraid that we will be too influenced by the mainland system, or the mainland style of life. And we don't want that. We think that Hong Kong is quite a cosmopolitan and modern city. But now, still the culture of China or their way of living is still a little bit different. And we don't want to be affected by them."
Some have compared the mainland population increase in Hong Kong to a locust takeover.
In an office in Beijing where they apply for Hong Kong entry permits, however, the mainlanders had differing opinions.
[Ms. Shen, Civil Servant]:
"I am not happy with this extreme means of expression. If a foreigner came to China and we treated them like that, it would be inappropriate. So I am still very angry with the extreme way they have dealt with this."