Chief Executive of China's Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) Carrie Lam said Tuesday the most urgent task for Hong Kong now is to stop violence and safeguard the rule of law to prevent Hong Kong from sinking into "an abyss and being smashed to pieces."
Vandalism spread in Hong Kong during the past week, with railways and cross-harbor tunnels blocked, the airport paralyzed, and police stations besieged in various districts, affecting daily lives of ordinary people, Lam said before the meeting of the Executive Council of the HKSAR.
Lam said some people, in the name of freedom or justice, have in fact been committing vandalism and damaging the rule of law, throwing Hong Kong into a state of panic.
The chief executive expressed anger at the attacks on law enforcement agencies including the police and even the families of police officers.
If violence persists, it will take a long time to restore the openness, freedom, inclusiveness and economic stability in Hong Kong, and the stable lives of seven million residents can not continue, Lam said.
"The only thing we need to do now is to resist violence, maintain the rule of law and restore social order. Only when all calms down, will genuine dialogue, fixing the rift and restoring social harmony begin," Lam said.