The 36-year-old leader of South Korea’s biggest opposition party said his fellow millennials will push back against Chinese "cruelty” in places like Hong Kong, indicating a tougher line with Beijing if his political group regains power.

Harvard-educated Lee Jun-seok, the newly installed leader of the People Power Party, said in an interview with Bloomberg that generational change is taking place and that he aims to harness it at home to return his conservative group to the presidency, and abroad to revisit Seoul’s relations with the international community.

"We’re definitely going to have to fight against the enemies of democracy,” Lee, the youngest person ever selected to lead a major South Korean political party, said from his office Friday. Lee, who took part in Hong Kong protests in 2019, said the pro-democracy movement in the Asian financial hub was reminiscent of South Korea’s campaign in the 1980s that toppled its autocratic government.