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WATCH: Chaos ensues as Hong Kong pro-democracy lawmakers removed from heated parliament debate

Pro-democracy lawmakers in Hong Kong were forcibly removed during a debate about a bill that would criminalize any disrespect of the Chinese national anthem.
Collin Jones The Post Millennial

Pro-democracy lawmakers in Hong Kong were physically dragged out of the parliamentary chamber during a heated debate about a bill concerning the Chinese national anthem, according to the BBC.

The bill in question would criminalize any disrespect of the anthem.

A number of legislators were arguing over the leadership of a committee that would greatly affect the bill's progress before security guards dragged legislators from the council.

One of the lawmakers, Eddie Chu, said, "If Hong Kong was a democracy, we would not need to start scuffles like this."

He continued: "Unfortunately we are forced into this situation. I can foresee more fights within the chamber and outside the chamber."

The debacle draws out the clear divisions in ideology in Hong Kong, which is a special administrative region within China. Pro-democracy activists have been battling since June 2019 for more sovereignty.

These advocates for democracy have only recently remade their efforts, after coming out of quarantine and self isolation due to the pandemic.

This is the second time in just a few days that there have been scuffles in the Legislative Council.

The Legislative Council was in a debate over who would be the one to run the house committee, which scrutinizes bills and decides on which ones are voted on.

Last week the council president appointed Chan Kin-por, a pro-Beijing lawmaker, to oversee the election of a new leader.

And then on Monday, before the Legislative Council began, King-por was seated in the chairman's seat, surrounded by more than 20 security guards.

Pro-democracy lawmakers entered the room and tried to reach the seat, but were physically stopped by the guards.

The guards used blankets to corral the legislators, while others pointed and yelled from their seats. One lawmaker held a sing that said: "CCP [Chinese Communist Party] tramples HK legislature."

During the dispute, which went on for several minutes, at least one person fell to the ground and was apparently injured.

One lawmaker took a running jump in an effort to reach the chairman's bench, but was stopped in mid-air by the guards. And after the lawmakers were rebuffed, the pro-Beijing representative Starry Lee was elected chairwoman of the house committee.

It is believed by her opponents that it will now be easier for the national anthem bill to be passed.

Beijing had been accusing the pro-democracy side of "malicious" filibustering, which paralyzed the legislature. And this recent appointment is another way Beijing attempts to circumvent the stand-still.

Collin Jones
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