Source: government will 'suspend' extradition bill - RTHK
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Source: government will 'suspend' extradition bill

2019-06-15 HKT 10:40
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  • March organisers say more than a million people joined a rally on June 9 against the bill. File photo: AP
    March organisers say more than a million people joined a rally on June 9 against the bill. File photo: AP
The administration has decided to "suspend" controversial amendments to the Fugitive Offenders Ordinance, a source told RTHK on Saturday.

The source, who declined to be named, says the government is expected to brief media on Saturday afternoon.

The source said pro-government lawmakers will meet with the Chief Executive, Carrie Lam, ahead of the news briefing.

The bill has sparked fears across the spectrum because it would allow extradition to the mainland, raising concerns that it could be used to target dissidents and quell free speech.

However, the Carrie Lam administration has repeatedly insisted that the bill should be passed before Legco's summer recess.

Organisers of a march against the bill last weekend say more than a million people took part, although police put the number at 240,000 at its peak.

The government said after the march that it would push ahead with the bill.

Some executive councillors, however, have signalled that it might be time to shelve the legislation, particularly after violent clashes between police and protesters on Wednesday that brought back memories of the 2014 Occupy protests.

Executive Council convenor Bernard Chan said on Friday that it is now impossible for Legco to continue discussions over the government's extradition bill in light of what he called the “massive conflict” between police and protesters two days ago.

Pro-government lawmaker Michael Tien, also said on Friday that he doesn’t see why the government needs to rush through the bill now that Taiwan has made clear it would not request the extradition of a Hong Kong suspect for a 2018 murder if the new legislation is passed in its current form.