Hong Kong’s top officials have attended a funeral procession for a marine police officer who died while on duty in late September.
Chief Executive Carrie Lam, Chief Secretary John Lee, Secretary for Justice Teresa Cheng, and Secretary for Security Chris Tang were among around a dozen officials present at Senior Police Inspector Lam Yuen-yee’s funeral in Hung Hom on Tuesday. Former chief executive Leung Chun-ying was also present.
Lam Yuen-yee – who was 37 when she died – was sent off at a ceremony with the highest honours. She was buried at Wo Hop Shek Public Cemetery near Fanling.
A weekly press meeting with the chief executive and meeting of the Executive Council were cancelled on Tuesday morning to make way for the funeral.
Lam, the officer, drowned while on duty after a suspected smuggling vessel collided with a speedboat carrying her and three other officers, causing it to capsize. Her body was found days later near the coast of Yi O on Lantau island.
Her death triggered a police crackdown on smuggling operations across the border with mainland China. Smuggling operations at sea have grown exponentially amid pandemic travel restrictions.
Lam’s death drew expressions of condolences from officials, but derision from some members of the public. Rapport between the police and some Hongkongers have remained strained after the 2019 pro-democracy protests and unrest that sometimes saw violent clashes between protesters and the force.
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