The murder suspect whose extradition case led to
reform plans that sparked months of anti-government protests in Hong
Kong has said he will voluntarily surrender to Taiwanese authorities,
according to the Hong Kong government.
The suspect, Chan Tong-kai, told Hong Kong's Chief Executive Carrie Lam in a letter that he is willing to travel to Taiwan where he is wanted on suspicion of murdering his pregnant girlfriend while on holiday, the government said late Friday.
The absence of an extradition agreement between Hong Kong and Taiwan has meant that Chan has only served a short sentence in a local prison for stealing his girlfriend's property and is due to be released next week.
The case inspired Lam to attempt to reform the city's extradition laws in the spring. The changes would also have affected Hong Kong's extradition procedures with mainland China, however, and sparked mass demonstrations over fears about Beijing exerting more central control over the city and damaging its special status.
Hong Kong has a vastly different legal system and human rights record from mainland China. When Britain returned Hong Kong to Chinese sovereignty in 1997, it was promised semi-autonomy until 2047 under "the one country, two systems agreement."
Now in their fifth month, protesters' demands have escalated beyond scrapping the original extradition bill, which was formally withdrawn by Lam in September. They have become a city-wide anti-government movement with further demonstrations planned for Saturday evening and Sunday afternoon.
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