Hong Kong's leader Carrie Lam said on Tuesday that recent "unacceptably cruel, insulting and intimidating comments" have crossed the bottom line of a civilised society.
She didn't name lawmaker Junius Ho, who apparently called for the deaths of people who attempt to separate Hong Kong from the mainland.
Speaking ahead of the Executive Council meeting, Lam said it's the job of the Secretary for Justice and law enforcement officers to judge if the remarks are illegal. But she said regardless of people's political stance, the immoral words aren't what people want to hear.
The Chief Executive said "I've already answered that" when journalists asked if she found Ho's comments unacceptable.
Lam said the intimidating comments she referred to were borne out of recent debates over the advocacy of Hong Kong independence, which she reiterated should not continue.
Lam called on all sides to stop pushing Hong Kong to "the brink of public disorder", as well as threatening national sovereignty and security and the authority of the Basic Law.
The SAR leader said that she supported the recent statement from 10 university chiefs which said they don't back Hong Kong independence and condemned unspecified "abuses" of free speech. She rejected suggestions that they made the statement after bowing to pressure.
"I think you have underestimated the independent thinking of our university heads, I don't think they can be easily influenced by a Chief Executive," Lam said.