Demonstrators, in hundreds of thousands, took to the streets of Hong Kong on Sunday to protest against proposed extradition law that would allow suspects to be sent to mainland China to face trial.
In what seemed like a peaceful demonstration quickly devolve into a clash between the riot police and the demonstrators at the Hong Kong parliament. The movement turned violent as demonstrators charged police lines to try to force their way into the Legislative Council building.
According to Euronews, protesters were calling for the resignation of Hong Kong’s chief executive Carrie Lam while shouting “protect Hong Kong” and chanting “no China extradition, no evil law”.
An official of Chinese newspaper as reported by Euronews said “Foreign forces” want to hurt China by trying to create chaos in Hong Kong over an extradition bill that has prompted mass protests.
Euronews also cited that according to some Human rights groups the proposed changes to the law would give China a legal way to take people from Hong Kong into custody and would put people at risk in Hong Kong.
“The proposed changes to the extradition laws will put anyone in Hong Kong doing work related to the mainland at risk,” said Sophie Richardson, China director at Human Rights Watch in a statement on June 6. “No one will be safe, including activists, human rights lawyers, journalists, and social workers.”
The Human rights groups have also said that China’s justice system has a record of arbitrary detention, torture and violations of fair trial rights.
Hong Kong officials said Hong Kong courts would have the final say over granting extradition requests, and added that people accused of political and religious-motivated crimes will not be extradited.
Recall that the proposal comes on the back of a Hong Kong teenager who allegedly murdered his pregnant girlfriend while on holiday in Taiwan. It was reported that the man fled Taiwan and returned to Hong Kong last year.
Taiwanese officials wanted the help of Hong Kong to extradite the alleged offender, but Hong Kong authorities said they were unable to assist because of little extradition agreements made with Taiwan.