August 19, 2019

Hong Kong protests: How will this end?

Amid escalating protests, can the government of China and activists in Hong Kong reach a peaceful resolution?

As Hong Kong prepares to enter its 11th week of mass anti-government protests, the world is holding its breath to see what happens.

The unrest was sparked in June by proposed legislation that would have allowed extraditions to mainland China. Bowing to protestors, Hong Kong's leader Chief Executive Carrie Lam suspended the bill and then declared it "dead" in July. But demonstrations continued, with many calling for Lam's resignation and inquiries into excessive police force. Others are pushing to preserve Hong Kong's autonomy from China through direct elections.

Hong Kong is a semi-autonomous region of 7.5 million people. When the former British colony was handed over in 1997, a "one country, two systems" arrangement was agreed. The deal has given Hong Kong residents fewer economic and political restrictions than those on the mainland.

But Chinese intervention in Hong Kong's affairs has been growing. And there are concerns that Chinese forces may step in to quell further opposition – despite international pressure to resolve the stand-off peacefully.

Demonstrators say they plan to keep pushing back, even as confrontations grow more violent, as they did during recent demonstrations at Hong Kong's airport. In this episode we ask, how will this end? Join the conversation.

On this episode of The Stream, we speak with:

Mary Hui, @maryhui
Reporter, Quartz

Agnes Chow Ting, @chowtingagnes
Member, Demosistō

Nixie Lam
District Councillor, Democratic Alliance for the Betterment and Progress of Hong Kong (DAB)

Read more:
Hong Kong protests: How could China intervene? –BBC
China State Media Present Their Own Version Of Hong Kong Protests – NPR
Why Hong Kong is protesting - CNN

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