Hong Kong Protest Leaders, Authorities Trade Barbs

Hong Kong Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying Says Protest Is an ‘Out-of-Control Mass Movement’

Tents on a blocked road leading to Hong Kong’s Central financial district on Sunday. Reuters

 HONG KONG—Protest leaders and authorities dug in over the weekend, as Hong Kong’s pro-democracy demonstration looked to start a third week with increasingly pointed rhetoric and key roads still blocked.

Hong Kong’s chief executive, Leung Chun-ying, said in a televised interview Sunday that the protest is an “out-of-control mass movement,” but not a revolution. He said none of the leaders of the three major organizing groups—Scholarism, Hong Kong Federation of Students and Occupy Central With Love and Peace—can dictate the direction or pace of the movement now.

Mr. Leung also said he doesn’t intend to resign as protesters had demanded, saying his stepping down won’t help to resolve the standoff and that their demand that Beijing retract its decision on screening candidates for the 2017 chief executive elections is impossible.

HKFS leader Alex Chow said in response to Mr. Leung’s comments that the chief executive is offloading his responsibilities to the central government in Beijing.

“Before [Beijing] made its decision, it was Hong Kong’s government that submitted a consultation report on political reform as the first step. There are hundreds of thousands of people supporting civil nomination,” Mr. Chow said in a weekly live broadcast public forum.

HKFS student leader Frank Chio, 22, rejected Mr. Leung’s characterization of the protests as out of control, saying the protesters have taken pains to ensure that behavior remained peaceful and orderly. “We are regarded as the most peaceful protest in the world,” he said.


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