Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam has finally tabled the highly controversial Extradition Bill, reports reveal this week.
The said bill sparked a months-long protest that almost turned Hong Kong’s economy to ash. In an apparent move to appease the protesters, Carrie Lam initially moved to suspend the pushing of the bill in June. However, this was not enough as suspension would mean a postponement. Ultimately, the strong woman evidently found herself to be at the losing end of the bargain. Therefore, she finally decided to just totally scrap the entire bill. Fortunately, protesters accepted the withdrawal. However, four of the five demands remained unanswered.
Carrie Lam: No to all demands
As the protests waged on in Hong Kong, five demands were forwarded to the office of Carrie Lam. Apparently, the five demands were:
- Full withdrawal of the Extradition Bill
- An independent probe on the police brutalities
- Amnesty for arrested protesters
- Not refer to the protests as riots; and
- Universal suffrage
Notably, Lam gave in to the protesters’ gravest demand. However, she maintained a hard stance on the other four demands.
The Extradition Bill features salient provisions that when approved would allow Hong Kong residents to be tried outside their region, and beyond their laws and protection. Notably, protesters claimed that Beijing figures greatly in this development.
Hong Kong currently operates as a Special Administrative Region of China. In essence, it maintains its own laws, legal system and economy. However, the region stands to lose its quasi-sovereignty as it’s expected that Hong Kong will be re-integrated to China by 2047.