Hong Kong, one of the major financial hubs in the world is facing protests over controversial extradition bill. Protestors that include people of all the ages in general but youngsters and college students, in particular, are protesting against a proposed bill which will allow extradition to mainland China. They are gathered outside the building of the Legislative Council since Sunday, blocking the way for legislators and paving the way for postponing the bill.
Protests and Clashes over Extradition Bill in Hong Kong
The clashes between protestors and police have almost brought the financial hub of Hong Kong to halt. Police have fired rubber bullets and tear gas to disperse the protestors. According to the latest media reports, the use of heavy force by Police has resulted in dissipation of the crowd, along with causing injury to 72 people of different ages.
Concerns over Extradition Bill
People are concerned that extradition bill will jeopardize the human rights of Hong Kong’s citizens who might not be free anymore to raise their voices.
While speaking to the media, a protester opined if this bill came into effect, many innocent people, much of whom are human right activists would be in grave danger because China had been after them for years .
Another protestor told media that recently he had lost a good friend of him who like him was protesting against the government for human rights in China. He got arrested during a protest and was treated in such an inhumane manner.
Different businesses have also voiced their concern regarding the bill fearing that its approval may force businesses to indulge in dealings with Chinese companies at unfair rates.
Chief Executive Carrie Lam’s View on The Protests
Chief Executive Carrie Lam who proposed the bill seems unmoved by the protests. While talking to media Lam opined that the bill would strengthen the ties between Hong Kong and different countries.
She said, “this is a very important piece of legislation that will help to uphold justice and also ensure that Hong Kong will fulfill its international obligations in terms of cross-boundary and transnational crimes,”
Senior Legislative members who are even senior to Carry are outraged at the extradition bill and have called on her to resign for they think her to become a Chinese stooge. Despite all the opposition, Lam has made it clear that she will proceed with the passing of the extradition bill. Due to the mass protest the second legislative hearing to approve the bill has been postponed and no reschedule has been announced so far.
International Community’s View on the Extradition Bill
The international community like the many people in Hong Kong is concerned about the passing of the bill and the growing number of protests happening there. White house spokesperson Sarah Sanders in media briefing expressed her concern over the bill and resulting agitation from the citizens.
She said the approval of the bill may expose American business people, tourists or American residing in Hong Kong to the questionable Chinese judicial system which may increase tension between the countries.