China's top paper warns 'turbulence' could hurt Hong Kong's economy

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The protests on Monday saw hundreds of protestors taking siege of Hong Kong's Legislative Council building and breaking into the building, shortly following of the 22nd anniversary of Hong Kong's handover to China by the British in 1997.

The cause may justify the escalation, because without a change in direction, freedom in the city-state is doomed.

Murder case turned political battle: In February 2019, Hong Kong's leader Carrie Lam proposed an extradition bill, which would allow fugitives to be sent to territories where Hong Kong doesn't have formal extradition deals - such as Taiwan, Macau and mainland China.

Beijing denounced British Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt as "shameless" and said it had made a diplomatic complaint to London after he warned of consequences if China neglected its commitments to guarantee basic freedoms.

When 27-year-old Yap entered Hong Kong's legislative council building, stepping over shards of glass and twisted metal into a chamber freshly occupied by helmeted young protesters, the first word he saw spray painted inside was "payback".

The city remains a golden goose for the mainland, so the tanks are unlikely to roll in just yet. Twelve people were arrested on Wednesday by Hong Kong police and charged with a variety of offences in the vicinity of the council building.

From around 4 a.m. until 8 a.m. local time, protesters initially clashed with the police when they attempted to unsuccessfully block Lam from attending the flag-raising ceremony where the handover of Hong Kong to the People's Republic of China is celebrated. Hong Kong was under Britain's rule for 155 years, during which it was run by a series of governors appointed by the British crown.

The former British colony returned to China in 1997 with a guarantee of freedoms not enjoyed on the mainland, including freedom to protest and an independent legal system.

China in 2017 said that the Sino-British Joint Declaration was a historical document with no practical significance and has regularly urged Britain not to interfere in Hong Kong affairs as the protests have mounted.

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He said the USA was disappointed to see the violence and vandalism at the Legislative Council building Monday night.

The Cabinet's Hong Kong affairs office issued virtually an identical statement under the name of an unidentified spokesman. Having been elected by a Beijing-approved committee, Lam is reliant on continuing support from Beijing, which has shown no outward signs of abandoning her so far.

"We can make it clear we stand behind the people of Hong Kong in defense of the freedoms that we negotiated for them when we agreed to the handover in 1997 and we can remind everyone that we expect all countries to honor their global obligations", Hunt told Reuters. "And I would stress to our friends in Beijing that the "one country, two systems" approach has worked, is working and should not be cast aside". "The rule of law is the last firewall between us and the Chinese Communist Party".

Papers are left strewn on a desk inside the Legislative Council chamber after being vacated by protesters in Hong Kong, China, early on Tuesday, July 2, 2019.

This time, fueled by mass public outrage at plans that would allow extraditions to China and their government's handling of the discontent, many in Hong Kong felt they had to take extreme measures in defense of their territory.

"However, he seems to be still immersed in the illusion of the former British colonialists".

Its citizens' rights are protected under the terms of the Joint Declaration - a treaty signed by the United Kingdom and China in 1984 under which sovereignty passed back to Beijing.

Geng said Tuesday that China's central government strongly supports Hong Kong's government and its police force in dealing with the incident in accordance with the law.