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Hong Kong protesters expected to take aim at Beijing again this weekend


Hong Kong protesters expected to take aim at Beijing again this weekend

carrie lam hong kong protests
Photo: Anthony Kwan/Getty

The first of two days of protests will begin this morning in Hong Kong.

Protesters anonymously posted plans online, notifying of their continued efforts to get the government to withdraw a proposed extradition bill that would allow courts to send Hong Kong citizens convicted of certain crimes to trial in mainland China.

Demonstrations have been ongoing since March 2019. The last two weeks have seen increased violence, with the protestors storming the Legislative Council on July 1 and clashing with police a week later on July 7, the former due apparently to Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam’s poor response to the public’s demonstrations.

Thus far, Hong Kong’s government has only suspended the extradition bill, but demonstrators still demand its full withdrawal, Lam’s resignation and the release of arrested dissenters.

The protesters (whose numbers peaked at nearly two million people in June according to organisers) are unlikely to cease taking to the streets in the short term. The extradition bill’s protests are seen as a means to defend Hong Kong’s eroding democracy from the powerful Chinese Communist Party (CCP) and its allies within the pro-establishment Hong Kong government.

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Challenges to Beijing, such as a mooted “collective withdrawal” from the Bank of China, are sure to irk the CCP. However, Beijing’s overarching structural power over Hong Kong means it will likely prevail in further eroding the citizenry’s freedoms in the long term.

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