Record number vote in Hong Kong in test of support for China-backed leader

HONG KONG (Reuters) – A record number of Hong Kong people turned out to vote on Sunday in district elections viewed as a barometer of support for city leader Carrie Lam, who has been besieged by nearly six months of often violent anti-government protests.

Brutal attacks on election candidates in recent weeks have thrust the lowest tier of government in the Chinese-ruled city into the world spotlight as the government struggles to quieten angry demands for universal suffrage.

Government data showed 1,524,675 people had cast their vote by 1.30 p.m., with nine hours still left until polling stations closed, surpassing the 1,467,229 people who voted in the last district elections four years ago.

First results should start trickling in before midnight.

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