HKSAR govt and police condemn violence in Sheung Shui protest

By Chen Qingqing Source:Global Times Published: 2019/7/14 17:13:39

Hong Kong police are collecting evidence from the LegCo Complex of Hong Kong which was stormed and ransacked by violent protesters on July 1. Photo: Chen Qingqing and Yang Sheng/GT

The government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) and Hong Kong police have condemned violent acts at an illegal assembly after a demonstration in Sheung Shui Saturday and  warned that all illegal acts will be probed and violators pursued.

A large number of people assembled unlawfully along Lung Sum Avenue, Lung Wan Street and San Wan Road after a public procession held in Sheung Shui, a Hong Kong town close to Shenzhen ended at about 5pm Saturday, police said in statement on early Sunday morning. 

Some protestors argued with other people at scene and attempted to charge and besiege police officers when the officers intervened. A large number of violent protestors deliberately charged police cordon lines and attacked police officers with different weapons and objects including iron poles and suspected irritating powder and liquid, causing injuries to the limbs and faces of a number of police officers, the statement said. 

During the operation on Saturday, police arrested two men for unlawful assembly and non-payment of fine, according to the statement. 

The police stressed that any illegal and violent acts will be investigated and resolutely pursued.  

In a statement posted late Saturday by a HKSAR spokesperson said the government always respects the public's right to express their views and demands in a peaceful, rational and orderly manner. 

But a minority of protesters used violence to charge and cause damage. It is believed the majority of Hong Kong people would also disapprove of such unlawful acts, the spokesperson. 

After the violent protest, rumors have also surfaced to smear police.  

A post circulating on social media platform LIHKG, widely used by protesters for organizing activities and demonstrations, accused Hong Kong police of hitting a female journalist with a baton, whose legs and arms were covered by blood, as several pictures showed. 

Later, the journalist, who works at the AFP Hong Kong bureau, clarified that she was not hit by a police baton, according to a post on her Twitter account. 

"People next to me scattered, and during that process something, or someone, caught my backpack or camera strap, causing me to fall to the ground," she said.

"Such violent acts seriously affected the social order of Hong Kong and livelihoods of every Hong Kong resident, which is intolerable," Hung Kam-in, a member of the Kwun Tong District Council in Hong Kong, told the Global Times on Sunday.

Yuan Chan, vice-chairman of the Democratic Alliance for the Betterment and Progress of Hong Kong, told the Global Times no matter how hard organizers of recent demonstrations vowed to hold peaceful protests, they eventually turned into violent riots, supported by evil backstage manipulators or others with different purposes. 

"Rule of law is not only designed to protect freedom of demonstration in Hong Kong, but also the safety of 7 million individuals and their properties in the city. We urge the whole society to condemn such behavior that jeopardizes the rule of law, and related authorities are urged to bring those law-breakers to justice," Chan said.

The illegal assembly happened after the public procession was held in Sheung Shui against parallel trading.   

The spokesperson said the government has also been concerned about the nuisance caused by parallel trading activities to the daily lives of local residents and has adjusted enforcement strategies in response to the mode of operation of parallel traders. 

Newspaper headline: HKSAR govt, police condemn violent acts

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