Legco protest zone closed over 'storming' risk - RTHK
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Legco protest zone closed over 'storming' risk

2019-06-11 HKT 16:10
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  • Legco staff have been tying barriers together with chains. Photo: RTHK
    Legco staff have been tying barriers together with chains. Photo: RTHK
  • Pro-democracy legislators brought an early end to Andrew Leung's briefing. Photo: RTHK
    Pro-democracy legislators brought an early end to Andrew Leung's briefing. Photo: RTHK
Legislative Council officials said on Tuesday that there is "high risk" that the complex will be stormed by protesters during upcoming meetings on the government's extradition law bill, and various security measures are being implemented to counter this threat.

A note to lawmakers from the Legco Secretariat says the council's designated protest area has been temporarily closed to the public, with police officers patrolling the area.

The note says the move is required because of damage sustained during violent clashes on Sunday night following the million-strong march against the new legislation, and because Legco staff are not equipped to deal with any similar trouble.

There is also an alert system in place, and if the situation around the Legco complex deteriorates, public services in the council building will be suspended, the cafeteria closed, and councillors limited to bringing a maximum of five members of staff in with them.

Meanwhile, Legco President Andrew Leung has announced that 61 hours of debate have been pencilled in for lawmakers to discuss the extradition bill, with another five hours set aside for questioning officials.

This means the bill could be put to a vote on June 20.

Leung also said that Wednesday's question time session with Chief Executive Carrie Lam has been postponed to a later date.

Before Leung could finish speaking to reporters, pro-democracy lawmakers rushed up to him with a large banner opposing the legislation.

The situation quickly deteriorated as security guards tried to prevent the lawmakers from disrupting the media briefing, which was quickly abandoned due to the chaos.