Hong Kong, Carrie Lam "ditches" the extradition law. Opponents do not trust her

According to the leader, the work of her own government was a "total failure".  But the bill "can be resubmitted to the Legislative Council within three months".  The protesters demand its definitive withdrawal.  Joshua Wong, leader of the protests: "Lam uses word games to lie to the people of Hong Kong".

 


 Hong Kong (AsiaNews / Agencies) - Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor, head of the Legislative Council (LegCo) in Hong Kong, says that the controversial extradition bill "is dead". 

This morning during a press conference, Lam said  that the government's work on the provision was a "total failure".  However, analysts and opponents point out that the leader has not definitively withdrawn the draft law, as requested by protesters who have taken part in various mass protests and unrest in recent weeks.  On June 15, the administration had suspended the proposed bill indefinitely.

Carrie Lam spoke to reporters before a meeting with members of the Executive Council (ExCo).  "There are still doubts - she acknowledged - about the sincerity of the government or concerns about whether the executive can restart the procedure at the Legislative Council.  So I repeat it here, there is no such plan.  The draft law is dead ". 

Previously, Lam had declared that the measure "would die" in 2020, when the current legislature ends.  The head of the LegCo stressed however that the position taken today is not very different from what was announced in June, adding: "In a sense, even if [the bill] is withdrawn today, it can be resubmitted to the Legislative Council within three months".

 Shortly after the press conference, one of the leading figures in the protest movement, student activist Joshua Wong, reiterated the request that the bill be "formally withdrawn" and accused Lam of using puns to "lie to the  people of Hong Kong ". 

Under the Fugitive Offenders and Mutual Legal Assistance Legislative (Amendment) Bill 2019 ("the draft law on extradition"), citizens of the Territory and foreigners staying or transiting could be extradited to any other jurisdiction in the world;  including countries that have not yet signed or implemented the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), above all China.  Critics argue that the law would undermine Hong Kong's judicial independence and could be used to hit those opposing the Beijing government.

In recent weeks, the popular campaign against the bill has kept the former British colony in check.  After the demonstrations on June  9 and 16, many groups vowed to continue protests and sit-ins, persistently asking for the resignation of the chief executive, Carrie Lam.  Many (diocese, political figures, etc.) have requested the government to hear the frustration of the people of Hong Kong.

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