Hundreds of Hong Kong’s riot police were deployed and arrested at least 84 people during a protest in Tai Po and a mourning event in Tseung Kwan O in the New Territories on Sunday.
While Hong Kong continues to record new infections of the Covid-19 virus every day, anti-extradition protesters have not stopped assembling and protesting for their demands to be met.
At 2pm on Sunday, dozens of local residents in Tai Po started gathering at the Tin Hau Temple Fung Shui Square for a rally organized online to oppose the government’s proposal to transform the Tai Po Jockey Club General Out-patient Clinic into a dedicated clinic for Covid-19 patients. Police intercepted dozens of people who passed by the area.
At 3:15pm, police said people were holding an illegal assembly and they used pepper spray to disperse the crowd at Treasure Garden, Inmediahk.net reported. Police were also seen using pepper spray on a reporter, RTHK reported.
More than 100 protesters walked towards the Tai Po Centre and chanted slogans, including “Five demands, not one less” and “Disband the police force now.” Some protesters threw debris on roads.
Proposed by anti-extradition protesters in June 2019, the “five demands” include an individual investigation into police misconduct and the implementation of universal suffrage.
More than 100 riot police were deployed to disperse the black-clad protesters at the crossroads of On Cheung Road and On Chee Road. By 5:30pm, police arrested 23 people in the district.
At 8pm, several hundred people went to a carpark in Tseung Kwan O to mourn the death of Chow Tsz-lok, a 22-year-old student who was seriously injured in an anti-extradition protest and died a few days later last November.
Mourners placed lit candles and bouquets of flowers in front of a picture of the student, and bowed deeply to show their respect before a minute of silence was observed.
At about 8:30pm, police declared the mourning event an “illegal assembly.” Several hundred riot police were deployed to the site. They sealed a pedestrian road and spent more than three hours checking the ID cards and belongings of the 300 people there. A policeman was seen playing a mobile game while doing his duty, according to Flash Media Hong Kong.
At a corner, seven police swore at a resident when questioning him, according to a video footage taken by Flash Media Hong Kong.
At 11:50pm, a team of riot police charged into Po Ming Court, about 100 meters from the carpark, and randomly arrested dozens of young people.
An i-Cable reporter was pushed down by a riot police officer and the female reporter suffered a head injury. Police said Monday they respected freedom of press.
According to video footage, two undercover police caught a black-shirted person, but then discovered he was also an undercover police officer. The same team of undercover police then chased and arrested a young person, claiming he had joined an illegal assembly.
Superintendent Ko Chun-pong refused to answer media inquiries about whether the police had abused their power by randomly arresting people who were far away from a protest site. He warned the reporter who asked the question.
A man surnamed Hui told the Ming Pao Daily that his younger sister was arrested in Kwong Ming Court at 12:30am after buying some beverages. He was asked to post HK$5,000 (US$645) bail money for his sister.
During the operation in Tseung Kwan O, police arrested at least 63 people for allegedly joining an illegal assembly.