Carrie Lam to withdraw extradition bill

Carrie Lam

Hong Kong, Chief Executive Carrie Lam is set to announce on Wednesday that the controversial extradition bill will be formally withdrawn, according to local media reports citing sources. However the public protest of 14 weeks shall wait for final announcements.

Hong Kong residents naturally feared that exercising their rights to speech, assembly, or religion in what is ostensibly a free territory would result in being the victims of gross human rights violations and took to the streets this June.

In a public address Wednesday, Lam said the Legislative Council would fully withdraw the bill “in order to fully allay public concerns” and lamented the mostly police-driven violence her government has plunged the city into, though she appeared to equally blamed the peaceful protest movement.

“Our citizens, police and reporters have been injured during violent incidents. There have been chaotic scenes at the airport and MTR stations; roads and tunnels have been suddenly blocked, causing delay and inconvenience to daily life,” Lam narrated. “For many people, Hong Kong has become an unfamiliar place.”

Lam also announced that she would modify the membership of the existing police oversight organization, the Independent Police Complaints Commission. This is a nod to one of the remaining four demands – an independent inquiry on police brutality against protesters – but does not address concerns that the police would exonerate itself of human rights crimes if it conducts the investigation.

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