Hong Kong Suspends Extradition Law Amendments After Large-Scale Protests - Reports
07:52 15.06.2019(updated 15:18 15.06.2019)
BEIJING (Sputnik) – Chief Executive of Hong Kong Carrie Lam indefinitely suspended amendments to the extradition law on Saturday in the wake of mass protests against it in the Chinese autonomous territory.
Carrie Lam has delayed legislation that aimed to allow extradition from Hong Kong to various jurisdictions, including Mainland China, without any bilateral agreements, which are currently required for this process.
The news comes after South China Morning Post has reported, citing sources, that Chinese officials from Beijing who oversee Hong Kong's affairs met in the city of Shenzhen to discuss a solution to the crisis over the bill, which critics believe would allow the government to crack down on dissent in Hong Kong.
The Chinese news outlet emphasised that at the meeting in Shenzhen, officials discussed the pros and cons of suspending the bill or pushing it through the Parliament, but they did not raise the issue of completely withdrawing the amendments.
The outlet added that Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor, Hong Kong's chief executive, held a meeting with key city administration officials late on Friday to also discuss various options. Another meeting is expected to be held on Saturday.
A senior pro-government politician told the South China Morning Post that high-ranking officials would meet with pro-government lawmakers later in the day to provide details about the reasoning behind the bill's suspension.
A mass protest against the bill, involving hundreds of thousands of people, took place last Sunday and was followed by rallies on Wednesday that turned violent and left around 80 people injured. Another demonstration is reportedly expected to be held on Sunday.
Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman, Geng Shuang, has blamed western politicians for instigating the protests.
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