Hong Kong leader denies report she discussed resigning with China

Hong Kong leader denies report she discussed resigning with China
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Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam on Tuesday denied that she had discussed her possible resignation with the Chinese government over the months-long protests that have gripped the city.

“I have never tendered a resignation to the central people’s government. I have not even contemplated to discuss a resignation ... the choice of not resigning was my own choice,” Lam told reporters at a Monday news briefing, according to The Associated Press.

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She added: “I know it is not going to be an easy path, and that’s why I have said that I have not given myself the choice to take an easier path and that is to leave.”

Lam’s statements come after Reuters obtained an audio recording from last week where the embattled leader lamented igniting “unforgivable havoc" when her administration introduced a law that would allow criminal suspects to be extradited to mainland China.

“If I have a choice,” she reportedly told a group of businesspeople, “the first thing is to quit, having made a deep apology.”

Lam on Tuesday blasted the recording and the leaking of her comments as “unacceptable.”

She has suspended the extradition bill, but protests have erupted with calls to kill the bill entirely. 

The demonstrations have plagued the city for months, and while they started in early June in opposition to the bill, they have since evolved to more general anti-government sentiments.

The protests have grown increasingly violent and, over the weekend, police fired tear gas and a water cannon at protesters, some of whom threw petrol bombs in the protests.