RTHK's English-language current affairs programme that takes "The Pulse" of Hong Kong ... and the world around it.
With the disqualification of six legislators, the pan democrats have lost their veto power in the Legislative Council and pro-government lawmakers and the government are determined to take advantage of that before by-elections take place. In the name of curbing “filibusters”, 38 pro-government lawmakers are supporting changes to the council’s rule. They have the heartfelt support of Chief Executive Carrie Lam, who says Legco’s rule book is “out dated” and she backs Council President Andrew Leung’s decision to impose a deadline for the debate to end before Christmas.
In a recent survey of 100 world city’s openness to the LGBT community, Beijing ranked last, Shanghai was 89th and Hong Kong – in 83rd place – wasn’t much better. Several criteria were taken into consideration, including the openness and friendliness of the city’s residents to LGBT individuals. Confirmation of this ranking was arguably provided by Chief Executive Carrie Lam’s distinct lack of enthusiasm after Hong Kong won the right to host the international “Gay Games” in 2022, It’s not quite the same thing but a similar mindset seems to be at work explaining why it has taken the Hong Kong government four years to put together a consultation exercise on law reform for people who wish to change their gender.
On Thursday, Donald Trump reversed decades of US policy by recognising Jerusalem as soley being the capital of Israel. He said the state department is to begin preparations to move the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. The reaction has not been unexpected. World leaders have condemned his announcement. The United Nations Security Council has called for an emergency session to discuss the issue. And the U.S. State Department has banned diplomatic staff from visiting Jerusalem's Old City and the West Bank for non-essential reasons, and asked U.S. citizens in Israel to "avoid areas where crowds have gathered and where there is increased police and/or military presence."