As Hong Kong protests quiet down, what's next?

Clay Curtis
June 20, 2019

They came in record numbers on Sunday to march through the city centre, with organisers putting the turnout at almost 2 million.

But it did not satisfy the many people in Hong Kong who are anxious that the law would fatally damage the city's economy and society, by allowing both residents and visitors to be sent for trial in China's opaque, Communist party-controlled courts.

Mrs Lam said that unless the government was able to address concerns about the proposed laws "we will not proceed with the legislative exercise again".

'I will not proceed with this legislative exercise if these fears and anxieties could not be adequately addressed.' The bill ignited several major protests, including a march by almost 2million people on Sunday and by as many as a million a week earlier.

She has already suspended efforts to get it through the city's legislature, but protesters and opposition figures worry that could leave the government free to return to the law in future. "I feel angry and like I'm hoping hope in Hong Kong".

Meanwhile, she reiterated that the SAR government will not resume the legislative process if controversies and anxiety over the bill are not fully addressed.

On Tuesday, she apologized and said she needed to do better, but also insisted she wants to finish her 5-year term.

Another protester, a woman surnamed Li, said that she had not left the demonstration zone since June 17.

"Not only is this apology not honest, it is fake".

"After this incident, I think work in the next three years will be very difficult ... but myself and my team will work harder to rebuild public confidence", she said.

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But Beijing said after the bill's suspension last week that it respected and understood the Hong Kong government's decision.

So far, China has been excluded from Hong Kong's extradition agreements because of concerns over the judicial independence of its courts and its human rights record.

"There's a lot of energy, emotion and passion and also anger", he said in an interview.

The bill has ignited several large protests, including the huge march on Sunday and another of as many as 1 million people a week earlier. As a British colony, Hong Kong had political, religious and economic freedom and it grew to one of the major financial powerhouses in the world.

Protesters give way for an ambulance during a demonstration near the Wan Chai police headquarters in Hong Kong, on Sunday in this still image taken from a social media video on June 18, 2019.

Lo last week classified afternoon clashes outside the Legislative Council as rioting.

On Monday, the city's police commissioner sought to reassure the public that only those who resorted to violence or other serious offenses would be prosecuted. He added that only five people had been arrested on riot-related offenses and that most protesters were "peaceful".

"Carrie Lam is politically illiterate", said Steve Tsang, a political scientist at SOAS University of London. She said any complaints over police behaviour should be referred to a government agency in charge of handling such problems.

Joshua Wong, the student leader of the Umbrella Movement democracy protest in 2014 who was released from prison on Monday, said it was time for the pro-establishment camp to pay the price and they should start worrying about the result of the coming election.

Critics say the bill would undermine Hong Kong's independent judiciary and rule of law, guaranteed by the "one country, two systems" formula under which Hong Kong returned to China, by extending China's reach into the city and allowing individuals to be arbitrarily sent back to China where they couldn't be guaranteed a fair trial.

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