The 2019 Hong Kong protests have been going on for 18 weeks now and no end is in sight. This is unfortunate: the protests will have substantial political and social repercussions that should be arrested at once. Before we discuss potential solutions, we must understand why the Hong Kong protests came to be: the controversial extradition bill proposed by the Hong Kong government. It would allow suspects to be sent to other jurisdictions, including mainland China, a controversial and divisive proposition. The protesters in Hong Kong were worried that if the bill is passed, it would undermine and possibly eliminate Hong Kong’s judicial independence and be used by Beijing to target critics in Hong Kong. This is the reason that the public is protesting against the government. Here are a couple of steps that I believe will end the Hong Kong protests and the effects on the nation:
1. Remove the proposal of the extradition bill. The extradition bill is known to be one of the main causes of the Hong Kong protests. Thus, the swift cancellation of the bill, though annoying to officials on the mainland, will have a very positive effect on the people of Hong Kong. Citizens have no desire to live under the constant threat of extradition. They wish to live in a Hong Kong where if they commit a crime, they face their punishments and court hearings in Hong Kong Thus, removing the extradition bill would be one of the first steps to solving the issue at hand.
2. Force Carrie Lam step down from the government of Hong Kong. Despite the fact that Carrie Lam isn’t the main cause of the Hong Kong protest, she is one of the reasons that the protests came to be since. It could be argued that her stubbornness and slow action allowed the protests to fester into something much bigger than it should have been. As Malaysian prime minister Mahathir Bin Mohamad has already posited, Carrie Lam stepping down would be instrumental in reaffirming the democracy that seems to have abandoned Hong Kong.
3. Get help of United Nations peacekeepers to halt protests and aid in reducing impact of them. The United Nation peacekeepers are seen by many nations and organisations to prove useful in ending civil unrest. Therefore, bringing in these peacekeepers will prove greatly beneficial to not only the government of Hong Kong, who are trying to end the protests (and failing), but also mitigate negative impacts on the mass public themselves.
Therefore, it is clear that the Hong Kong protests, a subject of fervent and heated argument, seems to have easy solutions. If measures to end them aren’t taken by organisations such as the U.N, the situation will not become better.