Hong Kong Crisis: Public Dialogue as Protests Persist
By Staff, Agencies
Hong Kong Chief Executive has pledged to start the public dialogue on social issues marring the semi-autonomous territory starting from next week.
Speaking to reporters on Tuesday, she also reiterated her calls for an end to the violence that came with the mass protests, largest in Hong Kong's history, triggered by a divisive extradition bill.
The public unrest has been on for more than 100 days now, with the first protesters hitting the streets on March 31st to condemn the bill that would have allowed Hong Kong to detain and extradite individuals to countries it had no formal extradition agreements with.
Despite the bill's withdrawal, announced earlier by Carrie Lam, the protests show no sign of abating as the protesters' demands have expanded to include broader democratic reform and independent investigation of alleged police brutality.
Sunday saw fresh clashes between the police and the demonstrators, with the hardcore protesters lobbing stones and firebombs at the law enforcement officers. The police retaliated by deploying a water cannon and tear gas.
Overall, at least 89 people were arrested over Sunday's clashes that broke out after the protesters rallied at the British consulate, calling upon the UK to stand up for the right of Hong Kong citizens.
The public unrest is now starting to cut into the territory's economic prospects.