CNN’s Ripley on Hong Kong Protests: ‘These Are Young People ... Who Feel That They’re Fighting For Their Future’
RIPLEY: "These are young people primarily who feel that they’re fighting for their future, the future of Hong Kong. They know that 2047 is the year that China takes back full control. Because one country, two systems was guaranteed from the handover from British rule in ‘97 until 2047. But the fear in Hong Kong amongst some is that China’s moving that deadline up and they’ve built a bridge that connects Hong Kong literally to the mainland. There’s a high-speed rail line. And you have an increasing feeling that China is becoming more heavy-handed. And what triggered these protests was an extradition bill proposed by Hong Kong's chief executive Carrie Lam that would have allowed China to extradite suspects back to the mainland, accused of crimes by Beijing. The concern amongst people in Hong Kong is that those crimes could include speaking out against the Communist Party, effectively stifling freedom of speech and freedom of expression in Hong Kong. That’s what started all of this, but it has now devolved into something much darker and much more violent."