fredag 6. september 2019

Hong Kong’s protesters have scored one for democracy, but the struggle is far from over

Hong Kong’s courageous demonstrators have won a significant victory – but the struggle to halt stealthy, long-term Chinese efforts to curtail legally guaranteed freedoms in Britain’s former colony is by no means over. Their protest campaign has come to symbolise the wider, global confrontation between authoritarian and democratic, law-based forms of governance – and that epic battle, too, has a long way to run.

By agreeing on Wednesday to officially withdraw the proposed extradition bill that first sparked the protests in June, Carrie Lam, Hong Kong’s chief executive, has finally done what she probably wanted to do weeks ago – but was prevented from doing by Beijing. In leaked remarkslast week, Lam admitted making “unforgivable” mistakes that plunged Hong Kong into an unprecedented post-1997 crisis.