Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam said on Tuesday that she would work closely with Beijing's top official in the territory to get the city back on "the right path" after more than six months of pro-democracy protests.
The appointment of a new head of the Chinese government's most important office in Hong Kong, Luo Huining, was unexpectedly announced at the weekend in a sign of Beijing's frustration with the latter's handling of the crisis.
The Liaison Office of the Central People's Government in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region reports to China's State Council or cabinet, and is the main platform for Beijing to project its influence in the city.
"I would work closely with director Luo in the coming future, committing to 'one country, two systems', and the Basic Law, for Hong Kong to ... return to the right path," Lam said in her first news conference of the year, referring to the city's mini-constitution and system of governance.
Luo on Monday, in his first remarks since taking office, used the same language, saying he hoped the city would return to the right path.
Lam did not mention the protests in her opening remarks, which focused on health risks related to an outbreak of a respiratory virus in the city of Wuhan on the mainland.
Authorities have identified 21 cases in Hong Kong, of which seven people have been released from hospital.
One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors.