LONDON — Hong Kong’s leader has condemned criticism from British politicians over the city’s recent jailing of student activists, saying such comments are unfair and “disrespectful.”

Addressing a business dinner in London on Wednesday, Carrie Lam said she was “extremely disturbed” to hear criticism of Hong Kong’s judicial independence from British politicians and commentators.

Tens of thousands in the Chinese city protested after a court overturned an earlier ruling to imprison three young pro-democracy protest leaders in August. The case raised fears Hong Kong’s Beijing-backed government was clamping down on the opposition, and international politicians from Britain and elsewhere called it “an outrageous miscarriage of justice.”

Lam, who took office in July, insisted that is underpinned by a strong belief in the rule of law. The leader was in London for a three-day visit and met British Prime Minister Theresa May in her Downing Street office Thursday.

Hong Kong, an ex-British colony, was promised wide autonomy and civil rights unseen in mainland China when it reverted to Chinese rule in 1997.