Hong Kong Leaders Back Down


Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam will withdraw the extradition bill that has sparked months of mass protests, CNBC reported. It was one of five demands made by the protesters.

The extradition bill would have allowed people in Hong Kong to be extradited to mainland China for trial.

The bill was suspended in July but the protesters didn’t find that acceptable.

Sunday was the most violent day of protests.


Lam made a public announcement Wednesday saying that the government had responded to each of the demands but admitted that it “may not be able to address all the grievances of people in society.” She then called for dialogue rather than further violence.

“The government will formally withdraw the bill in order to fully allay public concerns. The Secretary for Security will move a motion according to the Rules of Procedure when the Legislative Council resumes,” she said via a translation, giving four actions that her government would push forward with.

Other actions included “direct dialogue” with the community.

“Our foremost priority now is to end violence, to safeguard the rule of law and to restore order and safety in society. As such, the government has to strictly enforce the law against all violent and illegal acts,” Lam added.

The Hang Seng index in Hong Kong soared more than 4% during Wednesday afternoon trade following early reports that the bill would be withdrawn.

Hong Kong protesters released their five demands in July. Lam responded:

  1. Fully withdraw from a proposed bill that would allow Hong Kong people to be extradited to mainland China. Lam said it was withdrawn fully.
  2. Retract any characterization of the movement as a “riot.” Lam said there is no legal effect on how such incidents are described. Lam said cases are adjudicated based on the law.
  3. Drop all charges against anti-extradition protesters. Lam said the Department of Justice will deal with the charges based on evidence and in accordance with the law.
  4. Set up an independent committee to investigate the use of force by the Hong Kong police. Lam wants it handled by the current police council.
  5. Universal suffrage in elections for the city’s chief executive officer and legislature by 2020. Lam said it’s the ultimate goal but it must be discussed under a calm atmosphere of mutual trust and understanding.


The Hong Kong Free Press released a statement saying the extradition bill should have been withdrawn months ago, but it is “welcome.” But it does not change the fact the Hong Kong authorities have chosen to suppress protests in a grossly unlawful way. They are calling for an investigation.


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4 years ago

We have a lot to. learn from the peaceful protests of these young, brave, freedom loving students.