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The unlikely anthem of Hong Kong's protests

Credit: Reuters Studio
Published on June 20, 2019 - Duration: 01:34s

The unlikely anthem of Hong Kong's protests

The Christian hymn "Sing Hallelujah to the Lord" has emerged as the unlikely anthem of Hong Kong's protests against an extradition bill that have drawn millions of people onto the streets.

Michelle Hennessy reports.

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The unlikely anthem of Hong Kong's protests

**EDITORS PLEASE NOTE: Corrects to say THE song originated from 'Christian,' not 'Catholic' groups** It's a Christian hymn - that's emerged as the soundtrack to Hong Kong's sometimes violent protests.

For over a week the people of Hong Kong have taken to the streets demanding the withdrawal of a contentious extradition bill.

And while only around 10 percent of the population is Christian, the simple song, originally written for Easter, has been echoing around the city.

Protesters say the religious song has diffused tension with the police.

And even helped protect the demonstrators, during largely peaceful protests.

(SOUNDBITE) (English) HONG KONG FEDERATION OF CATHOLIC STUDENTS, EDWIN CHOW, SAYING: "Because as we're singing this song the protest becomes a religious meeting.

And, according to the law, a religious meeting do not regulate by the police, they cannot, the police cannot claim this religious meeting as an illegal meeting." It started with a group of Christian students who sang several religious songs at the main protest site.

But it was the five-word hymn that caught on among the crowds.

Since then it played almost non-stop outside the Legislative Council, and at demonstrations that have drawn millions onto the streets.

Hong Kong's leader Carrie Lam has since hit pause on the bill, and apologized for the handling of it.

And as a Catholic, some protesters even claim their adoption of the hymn, might have helped sway her decision.

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