Monday, 19 August, 2019

Hong Kong violence escalates as police and protesters clash in metro stations

Mind your own business, China tells Dominic Raab after Hong Kong call Clashes erupt AGAIN in Hong Kong as police fire tear gas at protesters after petrol bombs go off
Russell Knight | 12 August, 2019, 14:49

The protest organizer criticized the Hong Kong government and police's handling of the demonstrations.

Protests in Hong Kong began about nine weeks ago over a proposed extradition bill between the territory and mainland China, and have evolved into demands for greater freedoms.

The Hong Kong community, including political parties, residents and tourists, have voiced support for the decision by Civil Aviation Administration of China to ban Cathy Pacific staff who have involved in radical protests from flying the mainland routes.

The abrupt shutdown at one of the world's busiest hubs came as the Chinese government signalled its rising anger at the protesters, denouncing some of the violent demonstrations as "terrorism".

"We've been running all day but we're not exhausted", said Ah Sing, a protester in his 30s, wearing a black vest and surgical mask while he rushed from one protest to another.

At the airport, protesters held signs reading "Hong Kong is not safe" and "Shame on police".

Foreign secretary Dominic Raab has been told to stop interfering in Hong Kong's affairs by Beijing after calling for an independent investigation into recent violence in the region.

"What we seek to restore is a ... secure city that Hongkongers take pride in, one that has a police team we can trust, one with a responsible system and a far-sighted, efficient government", they said in the letter, adding that the police's abuse of power had created "white terror" in Hong Kong.

Over the weekend, as demonstrators threw up barricades across the city, police shot volleys of tear gas into crowded underground train stations for the first time, and fired bean-bag rounds at close range. Demonstrators avoided heading to North Point, where local pro-Beijing groups had mobilized supporters.

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Authorities have begun emphasizing the damage on the city's economy, already buffeted by China's slowdown and the U.S.

Cathay Pacific suspended a pilot who has been accused of rioting after allegedly participating in the Hong Kong protests, following a directive from China's aviation regulator last week. "We'll continue to fight.but we're also going to be smart and wear them down".

Last Thursday and Friday, China's state-owned media circulated a photo of Julie Eaden, political unit chief of the U.S. consulate general in Hong Kong, meeting in a hotel lobby with prominent opposition leaders, including Joshua Wong, a student leader in the so-called umbrella protests in 2014.

She said that she had lived in Hong Kong and China for two and a half years each, but declined to give her name.

Riot police fire pepper spray against protesters during the anti-extradition bill protest in Hong Kong on Sunday.

China's brutal 1989 crackdown on pro-democracy protests in Beijing's Tiananmen Square resulted in two years of economic near-stagnation as the country became an global pariah.

Young people have been at the forefront of the activism.

More demonstrations are planned on Sunday, including at the working class district of Sham Shui Po, the scene of violent confrontations between activists and police, prompting authorities to plan shutting many public buildings there. I've seen police being provoked here but I'm speechless.

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