The United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights is urging Hong Kong authorities to “consult broadly before passing or amending” an extradition bill or “any other legislation,” as protests in the autonomous territory continue.
Speaking at the opening of a three-week session of Human Right Council in Geneva, Switzerland, Michelle Bachelet also said that she continues to discuss with China issues related to Xinjiang, including allowing “unfettered access” to the western region, and other matters.
U.N. observers and activists say that about one million ethnic Uighurs and other Muslims are held in detention centers in Xinjiang. The international community has condemned China for setting up such complexes which Beijing describes as “education training centers” helping to eradicate extremism and give people new skills.
Hong Kong protesters blocked access to a Hong Kong government office building for about two hours Monday and plan another demonstration Wednesday to raise awareness among leaders attending the G-20 summit this week in Japan.
Thousands of student protesters dressed in black have been marching in Hong Kong for weeks, demanding the full withdrawal of the controversial extradition bill and the resignation of the territory’s pro-Beijing leader Carrie Lam.
Last week, Lam offered an apology for the political crisis and unrest sparked by the proposed law.
The Hong Kong protests pose the greatest challenge to Chinese President Xi Jinping since he took office in 2012. The Chinese government had supported the extradition proposal, and accused protest organizers of colluding with Western governments.
The U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has said President Donald Trump plans to discuss the Hong Kong issue with Xi at the upcoming G-20 summit.