Hong Kong banks call for restoration of order | Business News

Major Hong Kong banks including HSBC and Standard Chartered have published newspaper ads calling for the preservation of law and order and condemning violence, as pro-democracy protests showed no signs of stopping.

The lenders, also including Bank of East Asia, took out full-page ads in the papers on Thursday.

They were published after the latest stand-off between demonstrators and police on Wednesday evening outside a subway station where protesters had been attacked by a mob of white-shirted men last month.

The protests are already taking a toll on the Chinese territory’s economy and tourism, with the Asian financial hub on the verge of its first recession in a decade.

Further demonstrations are planned in coming weeks.

Standard Chartered said in Thursday’s newspaper ads that the bank supported Hong Kong’s government to uphold social order and “guard the status of Hong Kong as an international financial centre”.

HSBC said all parties must resolve disagreement through communication rather than violence.

Bank of East Asia had warned on Wednesday that continuing protests could deepen the impact on the city’s economy.

The turmoil first erupted in June over a now-suspended bill that would have allowed criminal suspects in Hong Kong to be extradited to mainland China for trial.

But the protests have since grown into one of the biggest populist challenges faced by Chinese president Xi Jinping since he took power in 2012.

The demonstrations have at times drawn more than a million people onto the streets.

In recent weeks they have included the storming of the Hong Kong legislature and major disruption and violence at the airport.

Meanwhile, China has confirmed that it has detained a Chinese national working at Britain’s Hong Kong consulate has been detained in Shenzhen, which links Hong Kong to the Chinese mainland.

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