HONG KONG — Hong Kong's pro-democracy lawmakers said Wednesday they would resign en masse to protest Beijing's growing control over the local legislature, one of the last remaining centers of dissent in the Chinese city. The 15 resignations were set off by a decision earlier in the day out of Beijing that forced the removal of four opposition lawmakers in Hong Kong . The lawmakers' departure comes amid Beijing's intensifying efforts to silence Hong Kong's political opposition and to curb a vast protest movement. Here's a look at key moments in the long showdown between pro-democratic forces and the Beijing-backed authorities who have chipped away at Hong Kong's special status as a bastion for free speech and independent courts. Extradition bill incites enormous protests. In May 2019, Hong Kong lawmakers scuffled over a bill that would allow extraditions to mainland China, where courts are controlled by the ruling Communist Party. That was followed by huge street protests, with organizers estimating that one million people marched on June 9, 2019 , in a city of about 7.5 million. Three days later, the police fired tear gas at protesters who had blocked a major highway outside the Legislative Council, Hong Kong's legislature…. Read full this story
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