HK Administration Secretary Matthew Cheung issues video plea asking protesters to leave

Hong Kong Chief Secretary for Administration pleads with protesters to go home “quietly and peacefully” in a videotaped message released Wednesday, June 12. Screengrab
Hong Kong Chief Secretary for Administration pleads with protesters to go home “quietly and peacefully” in a videotaped message released Wednesday, June 12. Screengrab

Matthew Cheung, Hong Kong’s chief secretary for administration, has a message for protesters: please go home.

The former Labour secretary’s plea came courtesy of a video upload in which he implores the thousands who have surrounded the Legislative Council (LegCo) building in protest of proposed extradition legislation to pick up sticks and “peacefully and quietly” head to the exits.

“The [Special Administrative Region] urges any residents blocking the main roads to return to the footpaths so that traffic can be restored to normal,” he says in the one-and-a-half minute video.

READ MORE: ‘Record-breaking’ crowds bring Hong Kong to standstill in Sunday extradition protest

While the LegCo issued a statement this morning saying it had postponed a debate over the legislation, much as with Chief Executive Carrie Lam’s press conference on Tuesday, there was no indication anything is actually being reconsidered.

“The government has intensively explained the original intent and content of the amendments in the past few months, and we have substantially strengthened human rights and other safeguards in response to the opinions of the parties,” he said, adding that failure to pass the law put Hong Kong at risk of becoming a “haven for fugitives.”

So far, that message from the government has failed to make much of an impact.

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