Hong Kong’s former chief secretary Anson Chan told demonstrators calling for universal suffrage by 2012 that they would be best served by targeting full direct elections in 2017 instead, the South China Morning Post reported. This falls in line with the National People’s Congress Standing Committee’s tentative approval for the direct election of a chief executive in 2017 and the Legislative Council three years later. Chan didn’t rule out universal suffrage by 2012, a key pledge in her successful campaign for election to the Legislative Council in December. However, the banner she carried in Sunday’s march read "Implementation of real universal suffrage as soon as possible." The march, a protest against Beijing’s ruling against universal suffrage in 2012, had 22,000 participants, according to organizers, although police said 6,800 people gathered at the start point.