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Hong Kong Anti-Extradition Protest Overview

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Many people take what they have for granted, when it comes to excess food that is wasted, luxuries that are discarded, or certain rights abused, many people don’t know how lucky they are. For example, citizens in the US have many freedoms that other people are still fighting for. Currently in Hong Kong, people are fighting for the rights that they feel they deserve and they either never had or feel are being taken away.

Though the conflict is quite recent, everything began in the mid 19th century when british merchants began using Hong Kong’s harbors for trade. Eventually, Hong Kong island was surrendered to Britain after the first Opium War and soon after China relinquished many more territories. From then on, Hong Kong lived under a totally different government than the rest of China. They were directed by a governor that was elected by the monarch to regulate Hong Kong and represent them. Even as 1997 rolled around, the due date of which Britain was supposed to give back Hong Kong, they still continued to have a unique government, though technically Hong Kong was now part of China is shared a “one country, two systems” policy which allowed them to keep a large amount of political independence. As a result, Hong Kongers had more freedom than the rest of China, and they wanted to keep it that way. On April 3rd, 2019, Hong Kong’s government introduced a new plan that would allow people suspected of crimes to be transported and trialed in China instead of in Hong Kong. It was called the Hong Kong Extradition Bill and people were not happy. Many believed that if they were trialed under chinese law they would be wrongly accused of crimes and believe that China will abuse this new power and begin to arrest anyone with strong opposing political views. China currently is a communist country, while many Hong Kongers advocate for a democracy, they feared that those advocates would be detained, so they began to protest.

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The first big protest was on June 9, 2019 when an estimated 1 million people marched toward the government headquarters in protest of the bill. Protests continued until Hong Kong leader, Carrie Lam, caved. On June 15th, she stated that she would indefinitely delay the bill thinking that that would stop the protests, unfortunately for her, people were still not satisfied. They wanted the bill to be fully withdrawn. The next day they went to the streets and protested for the bill to be withdrawn and for Lam to resign. Finally, on September 4th, 2019, Lam released a video to calm unrest, and announced her four steps to help alleviate tension, “First, the government will formally withdraw the bill in order to fully allay public concerns… Second, we will fully support the work of the IPCC (The Independent Police Complaint Council)… Third, from this month, I and my principal officials will reach out to the community to start a direct dialogue… Fourth, I will invite community leaders, professionals, and academics to independently examine and review society’s deep-seated problems and to advise the government on finding solutions.” Even though Lam took action, many say she has done too little in this situation and too late. At that point, it was not only about the bill, the people wanted so much more. Since the protests didn’t have a leader or a strong way to organize there were many ideas of what they wanted next. Overall, the people were now protesting for total democracy, police accountability and investigation of police brutality, for those who were arrested to be released, and for Carrie Lam to step down.

Though the government tried to comply, this bill was the kick-start the people needed. Those protests were just the beginning, now Hong Kong citizens will not rest until they have all of the freedoms they deserve. It started with this extradition bill but it could end anywhere, protests still continue and people will still try to fight for their rights, and maybe one day they’ll get them. For now, they will continue to revolt and inspire others to do so too.

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Hong Kong Anti-Extradition Protest Overview. (2022, September 15). Edubirdie. Retrieved February 5, 2023, from https://edubirdie.com/examples/hong-kong-anti-extradition-protest-overview/
“Hong Kong Anti-Extradition Protest Overview.” Edubirdie, 15 Sept. 2022, edubirdie.com/examples/hong-kong-anti-extradition-protest-overview/
Hong Kong Anti-Extradition Protest Overview. [online]. Available at: <https://edubirdie.com/examples/hong-kong-anti-extradition-protest-overview/> [Accessed 5 Feb. 2023].
Hong Kong Anti-Extradition Protest Overview [Internet]. Edubirdie. 2022 Sept 15 [cited 2023 Feb 5]. Available from: https://edubirdie.com/examples/hong-kong-anti-extradition-protest-overview/
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