Hundreds of thousands protest peacefully against Hong Kong extradition bill

People attend a pro China march in Sydney

Some said they were saving their energy for Sunday, when the pro-democracy Civil Human Rights Front, which organised million-strong peaceful marches in June, has scheduled another protest.

"Like all Hongkongers, we are sacrificing our time-and all that we have-in the battle for a democratic, free, and open Hong Kong", she said.

Leung also reiterated the peaceful nature of Sunday's march, encouraging all the "brave" protesters - meaning the more radical ones - to partake.

"The government right now doesn't listen to the people, and the police are too violent", said Bobby Tse, a retiree who watched the pro-democracy march from a bridge.

Congress also has the power to pass legislation affecting Hong Kong's relationship with the USA in ways which could further erode the territory's reputation for stability and rule of law.

Most iterations of the demands call for the resignation of Carrie Lam, the Beijing-backed chief executive in Hong Kong, and some form of enhanced democratic freedoms, such as universal suffrage, which was promised to Hong Kong under the terms of its 1997 return from British rule to China.

Vancouver Police put more officers onto the streets on Saturday afternoon as tempers flared at competing pro-Hong Kong and pro-China demonstrations.

Directly opposite, pro-China protestors wore red and carried large Chinese flags.

"We have to continue until the government finally shows us the respect that we deserve", he said. According to some reports they could be preparing to enter Hong Kong to assist in restoring order should police fail.

You Wenze, a spokesperson for China's ceremonial legislature, has condemned statements from USA lawmakers supportive of Hong Kong's pro-democracy movement, calling them a "gross interference in China's internal affairs".

Sunday's heavy turnout suggested that the movement still has broad-based support despite the ugly scenes witnessed during the past week when protesters occupied the city's airport, for which some activists apologized.

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On Saturday, pro-democracy protesters marched on one side of Hong Kong's famous harbour for the 10th weekend, while a pro-government rally called for an end to the sometimes violent movement.

"If President Xi would meet directly and personally with the protesters, there would be a happy and enlightened ending to the Hong Kong problem".

Communist-ruled mainland China has taken an increasingly hardline tone towards the protesters, decrying the "terrorist-like" actions of a violent hardcore minority among the demonstrators.

Ashley Yu, who handed out a pamphlet listing alleged acts of violence by protesters, including an alleged attack on a Chinese journalist, said she supports peaceful protest, but draws the line at violence.

Thousands of protesters have streamed into Victoria Park ahead of today's rally, which is expected to start at 2:30 p.m. local time (2:30 a.m. ET).

There are over a half million Catholics in Hong Kong and they make up about 8% of the population.

Clashes between protesters and police grew more intense last week when demonstrators organized a city-wide strike and stormed Hong Kong International Airport, forcing the cancellation of numerous flights in and out of the world's busiest airport for two days.

Harley Ho, a 20-year-old social work student, said protesters would not rest until their demands were met.

Video from the rally shows the two groups yelling at each other while waving flags and holding signs that say "we are not rioters" and "withdraw the extradition bill".

On Sunday morning, parishioners at St John's Cathedral in Hong Kong's financial district prayed for wisdom and responsiveness from government leaders, 'be they freely elected or imposed'.

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