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Police severely condemn law-breaking acts of extremely violent protestors
     Police earlier issued the Letter of No Objection for the public procession held in Tsuen Wan yesterday (August 25). However, some extremely violent protestors deviated from the original route, obstructing roads, vandalising shops and tunnel facilities, hurling petrol bombs, bricks and miscellaneous objects at police officers. Police severely condemn the protestors who purposefully harmed police officers.
     At around 3.35pm, some radical protestors blocked various roads in Tsuen Wan, including Luen Yan Street, Yeung Uk Street and Texaco Road, and set up barricades with water-filled barriers, bamboo sticks and other objects, paralysing traffic in Tsuen Wan. Having escalated their violence, protestors aimed laser beams and hurled bricks, hard objects and petrol bombs at police officers, apart from setting up barricades.
     In view of the escalated violence, Police issued multiple warnings to appeal to the protestors to leave but in vain. At around 5.30pm, police officers used appropriate force, including deploying tear gas and two specialised crowd management vehicles, to stop the violent acts of the protestors.
     At around 7.40pm, a large group of extremely violent protestors vandalised shops and entertainment venues at Yi Pei Square, Tsuen Wan. Emergency Unit of New Territories South was deployed at scene. The protestors hurled hard objects at police officers and attacked them with different weapons. Under attack, police officers guarded with shields and batons in retreat while giving warnings. However, the protestors continued to attack and injured police officers. One of the police officers under attack fell onto the ground. Being surrounded, under attacks and facing threats to life, six police officers withdrew pistols and stayed on guard while giving warnings to the protestors. In order to protect the safety of other officers and himself, one of the police officers fired a warning shot to the sky without any other choices.
     The protestors later went to various locations, including Sham Shui Po, Tsim Sha Tsui, Sha Tin and the Cross-Harbour Tunnel, and aimed laser beams and hurled objects at police officers. They also vandalised facilities and set up barricades with miscellaneous objects at the Cross-Harbour Tunnel to paralyse traffic.
     During the operations, 15 police officers were injured and sent to the hospital for treatment.
     Police arrested 29 men and seven women, aged 12 to 48, for offences including unlawful assembly, possession of offensive weapon and assaulting police officers.
     The protestors' violence disregarded the law and order. Police severely condemn such violence which was outrageous and have overstepped the bottom line of a civilised society. Only when there were violent acts or illegal behaviours which endangered the safety of people at scene, Police would stop them by proportionate use of force to prevent the incidents from worsening.
     Police appeal to members of the public to make a clean break with violent protestors and stay away from areas with violence. Police also hope that journalists could cooperate with operations of police officers and pay attention to their own safety. Police will take relentless enforcement action to bring the persons involved to justice.
Ends/Monday, August 26, 2019
Issued at HKT 3:58
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