The Hong Kong government said on Monday that Beijing has agreed to a concession in a bid to win over opposition lawmakers and ensure electoral reforms in the former British colony.
China agreed to a demand from the city's Democratic Party for voters to be allowed to directly elect five district council representations in 2012.
The concession meant the reforms were expected to get the two-thirds majority needed in the 60 seat legislature. But the revised plan has split the pro-democracy camp, with more radical factions accusing the Democratic Party of betraying the drive for universal suffrage.
A group of 10 Hong Kong university scholars published a letter in local newspapers on Monday backing the Democratic Party's move, saying the democracy movement "always embraced the spirit of fighting for every inch of ground."
Some information for this report was provided by AP, AFP, Bloomberg and The Wall Street Journal