Hong Kong’s Chief Executive Carrie Lam leaves her annual policy address due to disruptions by pro-democracy lawmakers in the Legislative Council on October 16, 2019.
Anthony Wallace | AFP | Getty Images
Hong Kong’s legislature resumed a question and answer session with the city’s leader on Thursday after pro-democracy lawmakers repeatedly interrupted her.
As Carrie Lam tried to speak, pro-democracy legislators repeatedly shouted at her before they were ejected from the Legislative Council chambers. Some of the hecklers held up a poster which appears to show Lam with bloody hands.
Pro-democratic lawmakers again shouted “five demands, not one less” at Lam, referencing the protesters’ list of requests.
Hong Kong has been engulfed in more than four months of mass demonstrations, which have grown increasingly violent. The protests were originally sparked by a bill that would have enabled extradition to mainland China. That legislation has been withdrawn, fulfilling one of the protester demands.
One lawmaker complained that the first three questions were given to members of the pro-establishment, Democratic Alliance for the Betterment and Progress of Hong Kong (DAB) party.
LegCo President Andrew Leung denied giving certain members priority, instead insisting he was prioritizing questions about how to deal with recurring violence in Hong Kong.
Thursday’s meeting was briefly adjourned before Lam reentered the room in a second attempt to conduct the session as planned. Before the session was suspended a second time, she took some questions about her annual policy address, which she delivered by video on Wednesday after similar disruptions.
Lam’s speech focused on the housing affordability issue in Hong Kong. According to an official translation of her remarks, Lam said housing is the “toughest livelihood issue” facing the city’s citizens and pledged to make more land available for public housing development.
Her package of land and housing initiatives is seen as a bid to restore confidence in the city’s future after months of anti-government protests that have crippled the city and dampened investor sentiment in the Asian financial hub.
Anti-government protesters have been critical of Lam and have previously called for her resignation.