Hong Kong’s leader Carrie Lam has said other countries “have no place” interfering in the territory, as she robustly defended a controversial national security law planned by China.
The law would ban treason, secession, sedition and subversion. Critics say it would limit the city’s freedoms.
But in her first public comments, Ms Lam said it was a “responsible” move to protect the law-abiding majority.
She denied that the law would curtail the rights of Hong Kongers.
These rights – set out in the Basic Law which is Hong Kong’s mini-constitution – have been in place since it was handed back to China in 1997 by the UK. The Basic Law guarantees certain freedoms to the territory, such as the right to protest, which do not exist on the mainland.
At the weekend, there was a brief return to the protests seen last year, with police firing tear gas as thousands of people took to the streets.