Carrie Lam speaks at a Hong Kong press conference on October 10, 2018. Photo: Anthony Wallace/AFP/Getty Images

Hong Kong's leader Carrie Lam announced on Saturday that a controversial bill to allow extradition to mainland China will be indefinitely suspended, but not withdrawn, per the New York Times.

Why it matters: More than a million Hongkongers have taken to the streets in the past week to protest the extradition bill, which some fear could be used as a political ploy to arrest and try political activists who oppose the Chinese government. Activists are still demanding that Lam withdraw the bill altogether, and are planning another mass protest for Sunday.

After repeated internal deliberations over the last two days, I now announce that the government has decided to suspend the legislative amendment exercise, restart our communication with all sectors of society, do more explanation work and listen to different views of society
— Carrie Lam

What to watch: The bill will likely be reintroduced at some point, but Lam declined to set a hard deadline: "I believe that we cannot withdraw this bill, or else society will say that this bill was groundless," she said. Lam added that her priority right now is to avoid more violent clashes between protestors and police, which have left at least 80 injured.

Between the lines, per the NYT: "City officials hope that delaying the bill will weaken the opposition by draining it of its momentum, without giving the appearance that the government was backing down entirely, according to the people familiar with the leaders’ thinking."

The other side: China's government announced its support on Saturday for Lam's decision to suspend the bill, Hong Kong Free Press reports. “Maintaining Hong Kong’s prosperity and stability is not only in the interests of China, but also in the interests of all countries in the world," the Chinese foreign ministry statement said.

Go deeper: Hong Kong's people stand up to China

Go deeper

Updated 23 mins ago - World

At least 100 killed, much of Beirut destroyed in massive explosion

Photo: Anwar Amro/AFP via Getty Images

A major explosion Beirut, Lebanon has killed at least 100 people and injured over 4,000, according to the Lebanese Red Cross.

Driving the news: Prime Minister Hassan Diab said the explosions occurred at a warehouse that had been storing 2,750 tons of ammonium nitrate for over six years.

Biden confidants see VP choices narrowing to Harris and Rice

Photos: Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images; Win McNamee/Getty Images

Confidants of Joe Biden believe his choices for vice president have narrowed to Sen. Kamala Harris and Susan Rice — and would be surprised if he picks anyone else.

The state of play: This is a snapshot of the nearly unanimous read that we get from more than a dozen people close to him.

An election like no other

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

The coronavirus will make the 2020 presidential election different from any in modern history: Voting that begins earlier, results that take longer, mail carriers as virtual poll workers and October Surprises that pop in September.

The big picture: Perhaps 80 million Americans will vote early, by mail or in person, Tom Bonier, CEO of TargetSmart, a Democratic political data firm, tells Axios. That's going to set up more of an Election Season than an Election Day — and increase the odds of national turmoil over the vote count.