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Global Times

HK leader warns HK on verge of 'dangerous situation'

Global Times

By Chen Qingqing in Hong Kong and Wang Wenwen in Beijing Source:Global Times Published: 2019/8/5 13:08:39

HK chief executive warns HK on verge of 'dangerous situation' amid city-wide strike

Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam said Monday she would not be stepping down and warned that the city of Hong Kong, which is now "full of bullying and maltreatment," is on the verge of a "very dangerous situation."

"I don't think at this point in time resignation of myself or some of my colleagues will provide a better solution," Lam told a press conference in Hong Kong.

Emergency mechanisms were put in place to deal with the Monday strikes, Lam said, adding that the Hong Kong government respects citizens' rights to express their demands, but protesters should also respect the rights of other citizens who are not involved.

Lam also noted that the demands of protesters have changed from what they were at the beginning.

"Some even wantonly said they want to revive Hong Kong. This is destroying the lives of 7 million Hongkongers that we treasure. Under such circumstances, things will only turn worse if we indulge with them," said Lam.

Some protesters simply want to get entangled in a life-and-death struggle and push Hong Kong to a dead end, said Lam, who asked the demonstrators whether they were betting their stable lives and the future of Hong Kong.

The news conference was held as protesters were carrying out a city-wide strike on Monday. Activists also descended on key metro stations during the morning rush hour, deliberately keeping doors open to stop trains from moving, severely affecting commuters and jeopardizing social order.

Outraged residents at Tai Po Market Station had to wait as the train from Kowloon Tong Station to Lo Wu Station was delayed by the strike. Black-clad protesters blocked train doors with their legs, arms, and even their backpacks. "Rioters! Rioters! Rioters!" groups of residents were seen shouting at the protesters.

More than 100 flights at the Hong Kong International Airport, one of the world's busiest transit hubs, were cancelled due to potential disruptions warned by aviation authorities.

The months-long protests across Hong Kong have also negatively affected the city's economy, said Paul Chan Mo-po, Hong Kong's financial secretary, who was also present at the news conference.

"The investment of the second quarter has witnessed a double-digit fall, the worst in over a decade. The retail sector has also slipped, with catering, tourism, and accommodation badly affected," Chan said.

The protests were triggered by opposition to an amendment to an extradition bill, which would allow alleged criminals to be sent to the Chinese mainland for trial. But the protests evolved into wider illegal demonstrations and clashes between roisters and the Hong Kong police.



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