Hundreds in Toronto hold sit-in to show support for Hong Kong protesters
Organizers say they are opposed to an unpopular extradition bill
Hundreds of demonstrators sat on a Toronto street Sunday to show their support for protesters in Hong Kong who are opposed to an extradition bill.
The sit-in outside the Hong Kong Economic Trade Office, located at 174 George St., was one of several rallies held in cities around the world.
Dressed mainly in black, the protesters brought banners, posters and place cards.
According to Canada-Hong Kong Link, an non-profit and non-partisan organization that organized the protest, demonstrators were there on Sunday to call for the withdrawal of the extradition bill.
World is watching, organizers say
The organization said it also wants to send a message to the Hong Kong government that the world is watching.
"We will fight hard to stop the extradition bill in order to protect the security and interests of the citizens of Hong Kong and 300,000 Canadians living and working there," Canada-Hong Kong Link said in a news release.
Today’s peaceful protest in Toronto made me really proud. <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/HongKong?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#HongKong</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/NoExtradictionToChina?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#NoExtradictionToChina</a> <a href="https://t.co/Gw404SR2Nc">pic.twitter.com/Gw404SR2Nc</a>—@Sevenstrong
The group works to foster community involvement among Canadians who are former residents of Hong Kong or who are interested in the affairs of Hong Kong.
The extradition bill has been criticized as eroding Hong Kong's judicial independence because it would allow some suspects to be sent for trial in mainland China.
Hong Kong's China-backed government has apologized over the handling of its controversial extradition legislation and suspended the bill, but activists have rejected the apology, saying a failure to withdraw the bill fully shows government is not listening to the voices of the people.
City councillor Kristyn Wong-Tam attended the protest, and said in a tweet that the legislation is an attempt by the Chinese government to "suppress the democracy movement."
Torontonians out against the Hong Kong to China extradition bill. This is another attempt by the Chinese govt to suppress the democracy movement + civil liberties of Hongkongers. This issue matters to millions incl 300,000 Canadians living + working in HK. <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/NoExtraditionToChina?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#NoExtraditionToChina</a> <a href="https://t.co/Vs1WluGuRO">pic.twitter.com/Vs1WluGuRO</a>—@kristynwongtam