Date
11 December 2017
Syed Kemal Shah Bokhary (left) says the student protesters are the future of Hong Kong. Photos: HKEJ
Syed Kemal Shah Bokhary (left) says the student protesters are the future of Hong Kong. Photos: HKEJ

Top HK judge breaks silence over protests, backs students

A senior Hong Kong judge has broken his silence over the ongoing street protests, saying the student activists who are driving them are the future of Hong Kong.

In an interview with a Hong Kong Shue Yan University publication, non-permanent judge Syed Kemal Shah Bokhary urged the government and the protesters to engage in a “real conversation”.

He said their first and only meeting was nothing more than a debate.

All of Hong Kong society should have a conversation about how to resolve political issues such as those being fought in the streets, Bokhary said in his first public statements on the seven-week-old protests.

He criticized certain “establishment” figures for polarizing society.

Bokhary said it is not feasible to simply ask the students to give up their fight for democracy, although it may be disruptive to ordinary citizens.

Meanwhile, Secretary for Justice Rimsky Yuen said the government will exercise its authority to the full extent of the law and will not allow lawbreakers to go unpunished, the Hong Kong Economic Journal reported Thursday.

Yuen issued the warning after a group of masked men using metal bars and a battering ram broke into the Legislative Council building on Wednesday.

He said the suspects will not be allowed to remain free, adding their behavior damaged the rule of law. Six have been arrested.

The rampage drew widespread condemnation from citizens including leaders of the street protests.

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Freelance journalist

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