Cathay Pacific is stuck between a rock and a hard place—Hong Kong and mainland China

ong Kong’s flag carrier and largest airline, Cathay Pacific Airways, is in an awkward position. It must triangulate between Chinese authorities, passengers, and its employees, some of whom have been fired over ongoing local protests.

Demonstrators in Hong Kong initially began to gather en masse about 10 weeks ago to express their opposition to a bill allowing authorities to extradite locals to mainland China. The weekly rallies have since evolved to call for, among other things, free elections and the resignation of Carrie Lam, Hong Kong’s chief executive. This weekend they include a three-day sit-in at the Hong Kong airport.

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