Hong Kong Protests


Protesters rally inside the arrivals hall of Hong Kong International Airport on August 9. Photo: EPA-EFE

Reyes, Gerald, Reporter

Protesters in Hong Kong destroyed a Chinese flag by trampling over it in an act of violence on Sunday, September 23. These protests have been going on for about 4 months since June 9, 2019 and several protesters or officers have been arrested, killed or injured. These protests have been the effect of the Chinese government’s extradition bill which is a culmination of a chain of events that happened long ago. Here’s the story: Hong Kong was part of China for around 2,000 years. The British, at the time, was trading with China for tea and so much so that China decided to only accept gold or silver. The British did not accept these terms and fought in a series of wars with China and the British ended up control over Hong Kong. The British then decided that because Hong Kong is surrounded by ocean it would be difficult to defend it and that the British would return Hong Kong to China after 99 years.

In 1997 Hong Kong was returned to China but with the context that Hong Kong would operate separately from China for 50 years. Now, in 2019, a bill has been proposed, an extradition bill, which will initiate the legal arrest of Hong Kong citizens to be extradited to China as China sees fit. The reason there has been a mass protest for this is because China has a very different legal system and different laws from Hong Kong. This is causing panic for the majority of people in Hong Kong because China has been heavily critiqued for violating civil rights and being corrupt. There is also a smaller majority of Hong Kong citizens who do support this bill and are also protesting. Either way, there has been an estimated amount of 1.7 million people protesting spanning 50 kilometers. The bill was said to be “dead’ by Carrie Lam, a Hong Kong Chief Executive, but it hasn’t been withdrawn.

Protesters rally inside the arrivals hall of Hong Kong International Airport on August 9. Photo: EPA-EFE