Hong Kong protesters clash with police over China extradition bill

Hong Kong protesters at a rally against the extradition bill on June 26, 2019.Hong Kong protesters at a rally against the extradition bill on June 26, 2019. Anthony Kwan/Getty Images

Today’s protests might see a higher turnout than previous July 1 demonstrations — after all, Hong Kong has been protesting for the past month.

The current round of protests began on June 9 over a controversial extradition bill with China. Since then, angered by perceived police brutality and the government’s lukewarm response, up to 2 million protesters have taken to the streets.

Why are people against the bill?

Critics fear it could be used to extradite anyone in Hong Kong to mainland China for political or inadvertent business offences — and encroach upon Hong Kong’s rule of law and political freedoms.

What has the government done?

It has suspended the bill indefinitely, and Hong Kong’s Chief Executive Carrie Lam issued a public apology — blaming herself for failure to communicate effectively to the public.

If the bill is shelved, why are people still protesting?

Protesters want the bill fully withdrawn — not just suspended — fearing it could be easily reintroduced. They’re also calling for Lam to step down, and for arrested protesters to be set free.

Read more about the extradition bill here.