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Video statement by CE

     Following is a translation of the video statement today (October 4) by the Chief Executive, Mr C Y Leung:

Fellow citizens,

     The "Occupy Central" movement has spread to various locations on Hong Kong Island and in Kowloon over the past week, causing serious repercussion to people's daily life and income. The provision of government services to the public has been affected as well.

     Yesterday, some protesters blocked all access to the Central Government Offices (CGO) at Tamar and the Chief Executive's Office. Some 3,000 government staff could not return to their workplace as a result. We have to ensure the safety of government premises and restore their operation.

     From yesterday afternoon and throughout the night, conflicts erupted among people for and against the "Occupy Central" movement in Mong Kok, causing much chaos and leaving many injured, including reporters.

     The Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Government strongly condemns all violent acts. The situation may probably evolve into a state beyond control, and will have serious consequences to public safety and social order.

     In the past few days, the Government has repeatedly appealed to protesters assembled at various locations to disperse peacefully as soon as possible. Stern warnings have also been made to protesters outside the CGO, urging them not to block access to the premises.

     Both the Government and the entire society hope that:

(1) all citizens, including those for and against the "Occupy Central" movement, will stay calm. There should absolutely be no violence; and,

(2) public order should be restored as soon as possible to allow people to return to normal life.

     The most pressing task for the Government is to reopen access to the CGO on Monday so that some 3 000 CGO staff can return to their workplace and continue to provide services to the public.

     This is in addition to preventing conflicts from taking place at Mong Kok and in other districts. There should be no more blocking of carriageways in Wan Chai and Central and Western districts so that classes could resume on Monday.

     There are many social issues to resolve in the community. But the proper way to do this is through rational dialogue. We need to work out a consensus while accommodating differences, and should not aggravate the problem with street protests.

     I hope the organisers and participants of "Occupy Central" would, in the overall interest of all, put an end to their on-street gatherings.

     The Government and the Police have the duty and determination to take all necessary actions to restore social order, so that the Government and some seven million people of Hong Kong can return to their normal work and life.

Ends/Saturday, October 4, 2014
Issued at HKT 19:48


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