Liaison Office to weigh in on fugitive bill

Local | Phoenix Un 17 May 2019

Hong Kong deputies of the Chinese top legislative and advisory bodies have received invitations to meet leaders of the Liaison Office later today.

The government intended to by-pass the bills committee by putting the fugitive law amendment bill to the full council to resume a second reading - a move suggested by former Legco president Jasper Tsang Yok-sing.

The Liaison Office will issue "important instructions" to the deputies regarding the fugitive law amendment controversy that firmly supports Chief Executive Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor.

This was after both the Liaison Office and the Hong Kong and Macau Affairs Office endorsed Lam on Wednesday.

Zhang Xiaoming, director of the Hong Kong and Macau Affairs Office, even said the "Hong Kong people trialed in Hong Kong" suggestion by National People's Congress Hong Kong deputy Michael Tien Puk-sun, did not completely comply with the SAR's common law system.

The meeting will be held at 3pm today at the Liaison Office in Sai Wan, and will be hosted by director Wang Zhimin.

Tien said Beijing's stance was very clear according to Zhang as it concerns the authority of the chief executive.

Lam said it is reasonable for Beijing to express its stance on the amendment, and denied that it is an indispensable task by the Chinese government.

Regarding the pan-democrats' call for the amendment to be withdrawn, Lam said it is within the power of the Legislative Council to approve it.

With that in mind, she hopes Legco will deliberate the bill, and asked the pan-democrats to stop stalling it from being passed.

However, the pan-democrats were critical of the fact that the Liaison Office has waded into the amendment issue, and Au Nok-hin of Council Front criticized that "Hong Kong is not ruled by the Liaison Office."

Meanwhile, the bilateral meeting of the legislature rival camps to solve the deadlock over the fugitive law amendment fell through.

The meeting between pan-democrats and pro-establishment was supposed to last an hour but it ended in just 15 minutes.

Martin Liao Cheung-kong of the pro-establishment party said the pan-democrats wanted the bill withdrawn and to allow James To Kun-sun to stay on as chairman of the bills committee, which was unacceptable to them.

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