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The British Occupation of Hong Kong (Before 1900)

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The British Occupation of Hong Kong: an Overview

First settlers were found in Hong Kong 7,000 years ago, but this was rarely mentioned in the long history of China because of its remote location. After the First Opium War and the cession of Hong Kong Island, Hong Kong became an important trade port and played a special role in modern Chinese history.

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(1) Hong Kong before the British Occupation

The history of Hong Kong dates from 7,000 years ago. A number of archaeological excavations and a large quantity of unearthed cultural relics showed that there was cultural development in the Hong Kong territory in ancient times.

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(2) Hong Kong Became a Hub of Opium Smuggling

Before the First Opium War, Western capitalist countries led by Britain smuggled large quantities of opium into China to create a market for their products. Hong Kong waters became a hub of opium smuggling.

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(3) The Battle of Kowloon and the Battle of Kwun Chung

Three skirmishes between China and Britain took place before the First Opium War: the Battle of Kowloon, the Battle of Chuenpi and the Battle of Kwun Chung. Two of these battles were fought in the Hong Kong territory.

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(4) The Cession of Hong Kong Island to Britain

As a result of losing the First Opium War, the Qing government signed the Treaty of Nanking with Britain on 29 August 1842. The Article 3 of the Treaty stipulated the cession of Hong Kong Island to Britain.

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(5) The Cession of Kowloon to Britain

In October 1860, the Anglo-French alliance entered Beijing and burnt down the Old Summer Palace. The Qing government was forced to sign the Conventions of Peking. The Article 6 of the Sino-British Convention of Peking stipulated the cession of Kowloon to Britain.

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(6) The Lease of the New Territories

On 9 June 1898, China and Britain signed the Convention Between Great Britain and China Respecting an Extension of Hong Kong Territory. China was forced to lease the New Territories to Britain for 99 years, with the lease set to expire on 30 June 1997.

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(7) The Issue of Kowloon City

The Convention Between Great Britain and China Respecting an Extension of Hong Kong Territory signed in 1898 retained China’s legal jurisdiction of Kowloon City. At the strong insistence of successive Chinese governments, Britain was hesitant to materialise its intention to violate the Convention to take over the place.

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The British Occupation of Hong Kong: an Overview

First settlers were found in Hong Kong 7,000 years ago, but this was rarely mentioned in the long history of China because of its remote location. After the First Opium War and the cession of Hong Kong Island, Hong Kong became an important trade port and played a special role in modern Chinese history.

The British Occupation of Hong Kong: an Overview

First settlers were found in Hong Kong 7,000 years ago, but this was rarely mentioned in the long history of China because of its remote location. After the First Opium War and the cession of Hong Kong Island, Hong Kong became an important trade port and played a special role in modern Chinese history.

(1) Hong Kong before the British Occupation

The history of Hong Kong dates from 7,000 years ago. A number of archaeological excavations and a large quantity of unearthed cultural relics showed that there was cultural development in the Hong Kong territory in ancient times.

(2) Hong Kong Became a Hub of Opium Smuggling

Before the First Opium War, Western capitalist countries led by Britain smuggled large quantities of opium into China to create a market for their products. Hong Kong waters became a hub of opium smuggling.

(3) The Battle of Kowloon and the Battle of Kwun Chung

Three skirmishes between China and Britain took place before the First Opium War: the Battle of Kowloon, the Battle of Chuenpi and the Battle of Kwun Chung. Two of these battles were fought in the Hong Kong territory.

(4) The Cession of Hong Kong Island to Britain

As a result of losing the First Opium War, the Qing government signed the Treaty of Nanking with Britain on 29 August 1842. The Article 3 of the Treaty stipulated the cession of Hong Kong Island to Britain.

(5) The Cession of Kowloon to Britain

In October 1860, the Anglo-French alliance entered Beijing and burnt down the Old Summer Palace. The Qing government was forced to sign the Conventions of Peking. The Article 6 of the Sino-British Convention of Peking stipulated the cession of Kowloon to Britain.

(6) The Lease of the New Territories

On 9 June 1898, China and Britain signed the Convention Between Great Britain and China Respecting an Extension of Hong Kong Territory. China was forced to lease the New Territories to Britain for 99 years, with the lease set to expire on 30 June 1997.

(7) The Issue of Kowloon City

The Convention Between Great Britain and China Respecting an Extension of Hong Kong Territory signed in 1898 retained China’s legal jurisdiction of Kowloon City. At the strong insistence of successive Chinese governments, Britain was hesitant to materialise its intention to violate the Convention to take over the place.