World

Hong Kong students in class walkout while tycoons visit Beijing as democracy battle escalates

  • Students stage a rally at the Chinese University of Hong Kong campus in Hong Kong, Monday, Sept. 22, 2014. Thousands of Hong Kong students boycotted classes Monday to protest Beijing’s decision to restrict electoral reforms in a weeklong strike marking the latest phase in the battle for democracy in the southern Chinese city.  (AP Photo/Vincent Yu)

    Students stage a rally at the Chinese University of Hong Kong campus in Hong Kong, Monday, Sept. 22, 2014. Thousands of Hong Kong students boycotted classes Monday to protest Beijing’s decision to restrict electoral reforms in a weeklong strike marking the latest phase in the battle for democracy in the southern Chinese city. (AP Photo/Vincent Yu)  (The Associated Press)

  • Students attend a rally at the Chinese University of Hong Kong campus in Hong Kong, Monday, Sept. 22, 2014. Thousands of Hong Kong students boycotted classes Monday to protest Beijing’s decision to restrict electoral reforms in a weeklong strike marking the latest phase in the battle for democracy in the southern Chinese city. (AP Photo/Vincent Yu)

    Students attend a rally at the Chinese University of Hong Kong campus in Hong Kong, Monday, Sept. 22, 2014. Thousands of Hong Kong students boycotted classes Monday to protest Beijing’s decision to restrict electoral reforms in a weeklong strike marking the latest phase in the battle for democracy in the southern Chinese city. (AP Photo/Vincent Yu)  (The Associated Press)

  • Students gather for a rally at the Chinese University of Hong Kong campus in Hong Kong, Monday, Sept. 22, 2014. Thousands of Hong Kong students boycotted classes Monday to protest Beijing’s decision to restrict electoral reforms in a weeklong strike marking the latest phase in the battle for democracy in the southern Chinese city.(AP Photo/Vincent Yu)

    Students gather for a rally at the Chinese University of Hong Kong campus in Hong Kong, Monday, Sept. 22, 2014. Thousands of Hong Kong students boycotted classes Monday to protest Beijing’s decision to restrict electoral reforms in a weeklong strike marking the latest phase in the battle for democracy in the southern Chinese city.(AP Photo/Vincent Yu)  (The Associated Press)

Thousands of Hong Kong students are gearing up to boycott classes over Beijing's decision to restrict electoral reforms in the former British colony.

The weeklong strike marks the latest phase in the battle for democracy in the southern Chinese city, and comes as a big group of Hong Kong's tycoons visits Beijing to discuss the reforms with China's communist leaders. The city's billionaire business leaders tend to support Beijing's policies.

Students will start the class walkout by rallying at the Chinese University of Hong Kong campus on Monday afternoon.

Strike organizers are dismayed over Beijing's decision in August to rule out open nominations for candidates, instead demanding they be vetted by a committee. That's raised fears candidates will be screened for loyalty to Beijing.