A Hong Kong-Kiwi who returned to the Chinese territory to live in 2006 is considering relocating back to New Zealand if the proposed extradition law in the territory is passed.

Thousands of protesters have taken to Hong Kong's financial hub overnight and violent clashes have erupted with riot police to stop lawmakers from debating a bill that proposes to allow criminal suspects to be extradited to mainland China, among other places.

Chloe Chiu, who holds NZ citizenship and lived in Auckland between 1996 and 2006 said she would move back to NZ if the law is passed.

"Freedom in Hong Kong is fading and some people have said this is the end game," she said.


"Honestly, I am heartbroken."

Chiu, 40, said she moved back in 2006 to give birth to her daughter, and this is the worst riots she has seen.

She participated in the mass protest on June 12, but didn't take part in the demonstrations overnight which had resulted in violent clashes.

Mostly young protesters wore surgical masks to hide their identities and plastic goggles to ward off pepper spray which police fired sporadically all day, along with tear gas, rubber bullets and bean-bag rounds.

Chiu, a data analyst, lives in the southern part of Hong Kong, about four train stations away from the financial hub, or Admiralty station, where the main protests took place.

"Admiralty station is temporarily closed to stop people from going there, but people are still finding ways to get there," she said.

"Police are doing this so the council can reopen the meeting and forcibly pass the extradition bill."

The Hong Kong Government led by Chief Executive Carrie Lam has said it had no intention of giving in to the protesters' demands of scrapping the proposed law.


The protesters feel the law will undercut local autonomy and end Hong Kong's status as a safe haven for dissidents fleeing the mainland.

Auckland businessman Joe Lam was in Hong Kong last weekend and said the demonstrations were the largest he has ever seen.

"The root of China is very deep for Hong Kong people, and most love our country - China," Lam said.

"We will all proudly tell people we are Chinese, but we do not agree with everything the Chinese Government does."

In the last Census, 222 people living in New Zealand identified with the Hong Kong Chinese ethnic group.

More than nine in 10 lived in the North Island, and two-thirds lived in the Auckland region.