Live from Hong Kong: Mass Protests Continue Despite Extradition Vote Being Delayed

Live report from Hong Kong

Over the past week huge numbers of protestors have gathered in Hong Kong to take a stand against another change in Hong Kong law moving the tiny country further under Mainland China’s grip. The protests turned ugly when police fired tear gas at the outraged demonstrators.

Thousands protested last week after Hong Kong politicians announced changes to the law that would allow the country to extradite suspected criminals to China.  The concern is that it would allow Beijing to arrest protesters and deport them to China –

This law that infuriated Hong Kong citizens which led to more violent protests during the week.  The Hong Kong Free Press reported:

 

Hong Kong Police Commissioner Stephen Lo has said “low fatality weapons” were used to clear Wednesday’s anti-extradition law protests because demonstrators charged police lines with weapons.

Lo said the protests were organised, describing them as a “riot.” He added that around 150 tear gas canisters, “several” rounds of rubber bullets, and 20 beanbag shots were fired during the protest clearance. In comparison, 87 rounds of tear gas canisters were used during the 2014 Umbrella Movement protests.

Eleven people were arrested for crimes in relation to disorderly conduct in public, unlawful assembly, assaulting police officers, and riot-related offences. He said 22 police officers were injured.

The protests are in response to changes to be voted upon in Hong Kong law –

It explicitly allows extraditions from Hong Kong to greater China – including the mainland, Taiwan and Macau – for the first time, closing what Hong Kong government officials have repeatedly described as a “loophole” that they claim has allowed the city to become a haven for criminals from the mainland.

Over the weekend, Hong Kong’s Chief Executive announced that the vote on extradition will be delayed but this didn’t stop thousands from protesting and calling for her resignation this afternoon –

Hundreds of thousands of people are protesting in Hong Kong against a controversial extradition bill, despite the bill having been suspended.

The bill, which would allow extradition from Hong Kong to mainland China, has prompted hundreds of thousands to demonstrate in the past week.

Hong Kong’s Chief Executive Carrie Lam said on Saturday that the plans had been “suspended” for the time being.

But protest leaders demanded that the bill was scrapped.

Some have called on Ms Lam to resign over the unrest.

The BBC reported hours ago –

This all comes at a delicate time in Chinese-US relations after the current trade negotiations were stalled.  China cannot afford to appear weak in any of its activities and therefore these protests are coming at a bad time for China and certainly are being closely watched by Beijing.

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