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Police severely condemn radical protestors' law-breaking behaviours
     Police severely condemn the illegal acts by a group of radical protestors who vandalised numerous government property, setting fires, attacking Police officers with various lethal weapons during protests in Sai Ying Pun and Sheung Wan yesterday (July 28).

     Although the Police have clearly objected to the application for a public procession from Chater Garden to Sun Yat Sen Memorial Park, the Police facilitated the organiser in holding a public meeting in Chater Garden, Central. However, at around 3.30pm, which was about half an hour after the meeting started, a large group of protestors proceeded eastward and westward, blocking carriageways in Sai Ying Pun and Causeway Bay respectively, causing traffic obstruction in a number of areas on Hong Kong Island. According to the law, this was an unauthorised assembly. In addition, protestors in Causeway Bay destroyed government property and created road blocks, causing serious traffic obstruction.

     At 7pm, the radical protestors who gathered around Western Police Station hurled miscellaneous objects such as bricks at Police officers. To prevent the situation from deteriorating, Police stopped such dangerous behaviours with appropriate use of force and conducted dispersal operation. The use of tear gas was to establish a safe distance between protestors and the Police in order to avoid direct confrontation.

     During the dispersal operation, radical protestors set fires at various locations. At the junction of Des Voeux Road Central and Morrison Street, some even set fire to a trolley of carton papers and used objects. They pushed the burning trolley to Police officers, seriously threatening the safety of everyone at scene. Radical protestors also burnt miscellaneous objects inside a rubbish bin at the junction of Queen's Road Central and Morrison Street.

     Also, the radical protestors attacked Police officers with blatant disregard for the consequences. Such attacks included hurling bricks, glass bottles, paint bombs; pouring suspected corrosive liquids; and shooting metal marbles with a crossbow. Large traffic signs removed from kerbs and hefty objects were hurled from height at Police officers near Rumsey Street in Sheung Wan, posing serious threats to their lives. Police also seized at scene bows and arrows which are lethal weapons.

     Regarding the incident yesterday, Police have arrested at least 49 persons for offences including unauthorised assembly and possession of offensive weapon.

     The radical protestors’ acts were getting increasingly violent. They escalated from removing railings, hurling metal poles and bricks to extensive arson and destruction. Police severely condemn such behaviours which have obviously deviated from the principle of expressing opinions in a peaceful manner. Police reiterate the determination and capability to bring offenders to justice.
Ends/Monday, July 29, 2019
Issued at HKT 5:02
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