Hong Kong school students and alumni united together and formed human chains on September 6 and raised concerns over the remaining four demands of protestors involved in a month-long pro-democratic demonstration in the semi-autonomous Chinese territory. This act came just two days after Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam announced that her government will be formally withdrawing the extradition bill that sparked the pro-democratic demonstrations. The proposed legislation would have allowed Hong Kong residents to be sent to mainland China to face the trial. Some protestors also said they will continue the protests because the government is reluctant to fulfill all the five demands except one which include electoral reforms and an independent inquiry into alleged police brutality.
#HongKong is not celebrating after embattled city leader Carrie Lam gave in to just one of five, long-running protestor demands - withdrawing a hated China extradition bill. Our @CBSNews report minutes after the news broke. #HongKongProtests #telltheworldhttps://t.co/fQIyXDxldt pic.twitter.com/GK4OpYacs8— Ramy Inocencio 英若明 (@RamyInocencio) September 4, 2019
The students held hands in blue school uniforms on Friday outside the varsity of Maryknoll Convent School which is a Catholic girls’ high school. The students paired their uniforms with surgical masks to prevent themselves from being identified and get rid of the effects of tear gas. Several alumni from different schools and clad in protestors' with black masks joined similar chains in the district. A young man, dressed up in his school uniform, held up a placard that read 'Freedom'. The protests, which began in June have become extremely violent in recent days with protestors pelting Molotov cocktails and the police countering them by using tear gas, water cannons, and batons.
Around 1000 people have been arrested so far. While the extradition bill was the trigger for the movement, it has since shifted its target toward the police who have been accused of using excessive force to disperse the riotous crowd. The authorities, on the other hand, said they have used minimal force to quell riotous demonstrators. Lam on Wednesday said her government would not accept any other demands and rather named two new members to an existing police watchdog agency introspecting the matter.
Hong Kong is a former British colony that was returned to China in 1997 which offered certain democratic rights for the territory. The anti-government pro-democratic protests started in June because the Beijing government tried to snatch away the freedoms entitled to the people of the territory.
(with inputs from AP)