Hong Kong’s beleaguered government will consider setting up a widely demanded commission of inquiry if the public is dissatisfied with the police watchdog’s report into the use of force by officers during more than four months of chaotic and violent protests, sources have told the Post.

The revelation goes a step beyond Chief Executive Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor’s recent promise to explore alternatives if the report of the Independent Police Complaints Council (IPCC), due by the end of this year, does not placate the protest movement and its supporters.

Lam has so far rejected this core demand by protesters for an independent inquiry into allegations of police brutality since the public backlash against her now-withdrawn extradition bill began in June, saying it should be left to the IPCC.

She is worried about how the 30,000 strong police force will react, given that officers see themselves as the victims rather than perpetrators of violence.

A source close to the government said top officials were now mulling such an option.

“The government really wants to see the public response to the IPCC’s report first. If members of the public are not happy with the IPCC’s report, a commission of inquiry could be considered as a possible way to respond to their concerns,” the source said.