China slams Trump's 'gross interference' in Hong Kong

Hong Kong protesters storm legislature, smash doors and walls

Anti-extradition bill protesters march during the anniversary of Hong Kong's handover to China, in Hong Kong, July 01, 2019.

As of 1 p.m., there was no indication from police that any protesters had been arrested. Officers grabbed the cart after it became wedged in the broken glass and repelled the protesters with pepper spray.

Five hours later, protesters smashed more windows and dismantled a towering metal grate protecting a section of the building, which was ordered closed and workers sent home. The protesters then left the legislature building, which was followed by the arrival of riot police to disperse the crowd outside using tear gas.

She said she understood where they were coming from, but it wasn't worth sacrificing their lives. "The Communist Party revoked our rights and freedoms and tried to deny us democracy", he said.

Millions of people have taken to the streets of Hong Kong in recent weeks, sparked by a law that would allow extraditions to mainland China.

Behind the Hong Kong issue lies deeper unresolved questions about how to approach to the rise of China, a debate being replicated across Europe and one that has been made more urgent with every United States tariff imposed, or threatened by Donald Trump.

Hunt, a candidate to succeed Theresa May as Prime Minister, said at a campaign event in Belfast that many supporters of the Hong Kong demonstrators would have been dismayed by footage of Monday's protests but that they should not be used as a pretext for repression.

For Lam, who typically speaks at a reception after the flag-raising, it will be her first public appearance in more than two weeks.

She insisted her government has good intentions, but said "I will learn the lesson and ensure that the government's future work will be closer and more responsive to the aspirations, sentiments and opinions of the community".

Once inside, they tore down portraits of the city's leaders, hoisted a British colonial-era flag in the main chamber and sprayed the city crest with black paint.

City leader Carrie Lam stated that she strongly condemns "these violent acts" and will take necessary legal action.

The extradition bill controversy has given fresh momentum to Hong Kong's pro-democracy opposition movement, awakening broader concerns that China is chipping away at the rights guaranteed to Hong Kong for 50 years under the "one country, two systems" framework. More than 1 million people took to the streets last month, and demonstrators called for workers and students to strike after a second protest drew almost 2 million people.

The spray-painting of slogans like "Hong Kong is not China" around the walls shattered any lingering illusions over the nature of their rebellion: This was a clear repudiation of China's sovereignty over the enclave.

Tens of thousands marched in temperatures of around 33 degrees Celsius (91.4°F) from Victoria Park in an annual rally. "She is protected by our flawed system".

The chief executive held a pre-dawn press conference after police had fired tear gas and evicted the intruders.

On the mainland, Beijing had sought to suppress news of the protests, which roughly coincided with celebrations of the 22nd anniversary of Hong Kong's handover from British to Chinese rule.

The unprecedented intensity of Monday's protests will also give Beijing "a reason for being much more hands on and more repressive" when it comes to Hong Kong, he added. "I don't know why the government is harming us".

But privately the Foreign Office admits that the cause of upholding the rule of law has had a temporary setback. But the reason the extradition law represents such a threat is that it breaks down the firewall between Chinese and Hong Kong law.

For the moment, the Foreign Office points to the continued independence of the Hong Kong judiciary as a bulwark against authoritarianism.

Consistent with the activities of the past months, protesters demanded the permanent withdrawal of a bill that would allow extraditions to the Chinese mainland and the resignation of city leader Carrie Lam.

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