The pro-democracy Progressive Lawyers Group issued a statement saying Chief Executive Carrie Lam’s failure to listen to the people is “far more troubling” than the damage done by protesters to the Legco building, RTHK reports. 

The group also criticized Lam for being “shockingly indifferent” to three young people whose suicides were linked to the anti-extradition protests. The group noted that when Lam held a media session at 4:00am on 2 July, she only said she was saddened by the damage of the Legco building caused by protesters, but expressed “not even a word of condolence” about the deaths. 

It also said Lam had failed to address the roots of protesters’ “anger and frustration” in light of the extradition bill controversy. 

“We further believe that it was the CE’s failure to provide any meaningful response to the reasonable requests made peacefully by the general public to be one of the root causes of the escalation by some protesters in their desperate bid to demand a response from the government,” the statement said. 

“One of the reasons young people have apparently resorted to more radical measures is because of their disappointment with other more mature members of the society who have yet to hold the government accountable,” it added. 

The group reiterated protesters’ demands for the extradition bill to be completely withdrawn, and for the government to appoint an independent commission of inquiry to investigate police’s use of force on 12 June during clashes with protesters near Legco.
The group also appealed to protesters to exercise self-restraint in pursuit of their causes.

(Article originally appeared in The Standard on 4 July 2019)