Politicians in Hong Kong have led a protest calling on Beijing to guarantee the city's autonomy from China, after a number of booksellers critical of the country have gone missing. Demonstrators were seen outside the office of Beijing's Hong Kong representative on 4 January, chanting "protect one country two systems" and "guarantee Freedom of Publication".
65-year-old Lee Bo, a shareholder in Causeway Bay Books, went missing on 30 December. He is the fifth publisher or seller of critical books about China to go missing in recent months.
Protest organiser and civic party leader Alan Leong said, "How can it be allowed to happen, that any one of us, having published a book or written an article that was not pleasing to the eyes of Chinese leaders, they could send somebody here to Hong Kong to remove this person? What is then left of 'one country, two systems?'"
Hong Kong Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying said on 4 January that there was no evidence that points towards Chinese involvement in the disappearances.
However, he added that if China were involved it would be an "unacceptable" breach of the mini-constitution, the Basic Law. Basic Law guarantees Hong Kong freedom of speech and independent law enforcement overseen by an independent judiciary.
Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said the government has "no information" about the disappearances.