Hong Kong's pro-democracy opposition won a landslide victory in Sunday's district council elections.
This comes as a clear rebuke to city leader Carrie Lam over her handling of recent violent protests in the country.
Some votes were still being counted early today, but Hong Kong media tallied that the pro-democracy camp had won a commanding majority in the vote for 452 district council seats.
The results could force the communist central government in Beijing to rethink how to handle the unrest, which is now in its sixth month in Hong Kong.
The election results are seen as a test of public support for anti-government protests that have persisted since June between thousands of people in Hong Kong and their government which now answers to the central government in China.
Many say Lam must heed the demands of protesters including free elections for the city's leader and legislature, and they want an independent probe into police brutality.
Dr. Chung Kim Wah, assistant professor of Social Policy, Social Welfare and Community Development at Hong Kong Polytechnic University, said,
"The pro-democracy camp has won a landslide victory on this DB (district board) election and that indicates strongly to the government that people are unhappy on the existing arrangement, existing strategy for the government to handle the issue."
In the meantime, a group of newly-elected pro-democracy legislators gathered near Polytechnic University where protesters had taken siege.
More than 1,000 protesters surrendered after clashes with police.
Meanwhile, Lam says her government respects the results of the election and will listen to and seriously reflect on the opinions of members of the public.