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Last Updated: Sunday, 3 June 2007, 08:25 GMT 09:25 UK
HK marchers demand more English
By Vaudine England
BBC News, Hong Kong

Hong Kong's Star Ferry - picture by Kees Metselaar
The government says it is doing its best to fulfil its legal obligation
A small group of protesters of South Asian origin have marched through central Hong Kong demanding more schooling in the English language.

They say they are increasingly forced into Chinese-language schools due to a lack of places in English schools.

Many of the marchers have lived in Hong Kong for generations and so are Hong Kong residents who should have equal rights to education.

The handful of demonstrators marched on the central government offices.

Daily struggle

Carrying banners written in Chinese and English, they called for the provision of more schools teaching in the English language.

Currently there are not enough English language places in schools and they say they are losing out in examination results and chances to go to university because they are forced to go to classes conducted in Chinese.

For many Nepalis - in Hong Kong since their forebears worked for Britain's Gurkha regiments - life is a daily struggle in at least three languages - Nepali, English and Chinese.

The government says it is doing its best to fulfil its legal obligation to provide free access to education for all Hong Kong people.

But legislators and activists supporting the many ethnic minorities making up Hong Kong say the push toward more Chinese language in schools and elsewhere is only increasing.

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