Police strongly condemn violent and vandalistic acts

     Violent protests and vandalistic acts occurred in multiple districts on Hong Kong Island and in Kowloon yesterday (November 2). Police express strong condemnation against rioters.

     Despite Police’s objection, many people took part in an unlawful assembly in Victoria Park since about 2pm yesterday which turned out to be massive vandalistic acts.  Rioters first blocked a number of thoroughfares in Causeway Bay and Wan Chai with mills barriers and miscellaneous objects. They then set fires to barricades and hurled petrol bombs, bricks and hard objects at police officers.  Some even placed nails on roads, threatening the safety of road users and residents nearby.

     Later, rioters popped up in various districts on Hong Kong Island and in Kowloon. They blocked roads with miscellaneous objects. Some rioters extensively vandalised and burnt selected shops and damaged MTR facilities in an organized manner. Some rioters even attacked passers-by.

     Due to the deteriorating situation, Police stopped two public events in Central district  in order to safeguard public safety and public order, according to the Public Order Ordinance, though Letters of No Objection had been issued. The organisers were requested to follow the instructions of Police and arrange participants to leave the scenes in an orderly manner.

     In the dispersal operation yesterday, Police deployed the specialised crowd management vehicles and used tear gases, rubber bullets, bean bag rounds and 40mm react rounds, etc., to stop the illegal acts of the protestors. As at 1am today (November 3), over 200 persons were arrested for offences of unlawful assembly, possession of offensive weapon, criminal damage, and using facial covering while at an unlawful assembly, etc. Besides, the Organized Crime and Triad Bureau arrested four men and a woman yesterday for possession of offensive weapon. Officers seized weapons including 188 petrol bombs, several extendable batons and pepper sprays.

     Police strongly condemn the rioters' violent and vandalistic acts which completely disregard law and order. The continued vandalism is seriously affecting public order and people’s daily living.  Police reiterate that no violent behaviour will be tolerated. Police will continue to take resolute enforcement action so as to safeguard the city’s public safety and bring all lawbreakers to justice.

Ends/Sunday, November 3, 2019
Issued at HKT 2:07