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Police urge illegal occupiers to leave soonest

     A Police spokesman said today (December 10) that the illegal road occupations have lasted for more than two months, and have seriously undermined the rule of law and disrupted public order. The daily lives of the general public have also been greatly disrupted. Police urge the illegal road occupiers to respect the rule of law, obey the court order, remove the obstacles and personal belongings, and leave in a peaceful and orderly manner immediately, so that the blocked roads can be re-opened and public order restored.

     Police announced yesterday that Police would render full assistance to bailiffs when necessary in executing the Injunction Order on the public carriageways on Connuaght Road Central, Harcourt Road and Cotton Tree Drive tomorrow (December 11). After assisting bailiffs with the execution of the Injunction Order, Police will also exercise other powers conferred by the law to remove obstacles on the carriageways and pavements in Admiralty and Central in order to re-open the nearby roads, including Connaught Road Central, Harcourt Road, Tim Wa Avenue and Gloucester Road.  As for the sections of illegally occupied roads in Causeway Bay, Police will remove the obstacles and re-open the roads concerned at an appropriate time.

     Police have pointed out on many occasions that the illegal occupation in Admiralty is an unlawful assembly. Thus, it is highly irresponsible for anyone to call on others to return to the illegally occupied areas so as to be arrested. Such act is in fact inciting others to take part in an unlawful assembly. To keep on blocking roads will only greatly disrupt the daily lives of the general public. There are also individuals claiming that they will equip themselves with full body armour or other offensive equipment to put up the so-called ¡¥self-defence¡¦, obstruct enforcement actions by throwing water bottles and bricks at Police officers, or resist Police officers violently so as to ¡¥protect¡¦ or ¡¥rescue¡¦ their peers. Police stress that these are illegal acts, and are only excuses put up by radicals and troublemakers to cover their violent acts and mask their illegal acts of defying the law.  These excuses will only mislead others into dangerous confrontations and these acts may constitute the offences of ¡§Obstructing Police Officers¡¨, ¡§Assaulting Police Officers¡¨, ¡§Disorderly Conduct in Public Place¡¨ and ¡§Unlawful Assembly¡¨. These proclamations and acts will increase the risk of further confrontations, leading to further resistance and even charging at Police.  Under such circumstances, Police are left with no other alternatives but to proportionally escalate the level of use of force to execute our duties. This is not what Police want to see.

     If the illegal occupiers take heed of Police advice and leave immediately without committing any illegal acts, putting up resistance or charging Police cordon lines, Police will not have to use any force. Police emphasise that resolute actions will be taken against anyone who obstructs or violently charges the bailiffs and Police officers who are executing their duties.  Police will also reclaim government properties misappropriated by illegal occupiers, such as mills barriers and water barriers.

     Police urge the illegal occupiers to remove the obstacles, take away personal belongings and leave in a peaceful and orderly manner immediately so that the blocked roads can be re-opened and public order be restored. Police also urge members of the public, students in particular, to distance themselves from the radicals and not be used or incited by them.  On the day of Police operation, members of the public should avoid going to the concerned illegally occupied areas.

     Police reiterate that if anyone blocks the re-opened roads or other sections of roads, Police are duty bound to take resolute and professional actions to preserve public peace, and to safeguard public order and public safety.

Ends/Wednesday, December 10, 2014
Issued at HKT 19:38


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