Hong Kong | police hong kong has resorted Sunday to tear gas to try to disperse hundreds of people who had defied a ban on protests to scroll against the project of Beijing to impose on the city an act on the “national security”, many of whom fear that it announces the end of freedoms in the former british colony.
The communist regime was filed Friday in the chinese Parliament a text to prohibit “treason, secession, sedition and subversion” in Hong Kong, in response to the demonstrations of the democratic opposition in 2019.
The movement’s pro-democracy had multiplied its appeals to denounce this passage, in force, in Beijing on an issue that arouses for years the opposition in hong Kong. Hundreds of activists have been present in the early after-noon on Sunday, chanting slogans against the government in the shopping area of Causeway Bay, on Hong Kong island.
“People can be prosecuted for what they say or write against the government,” said Vincent, a protester of 25 years, in reference to the project of law of Beijing.
“Hong Kong people are angry, because we were not expecting this to happen so fast and so brutal”, he continued. “But we are not naive. Things will only get worse.”
The small group of protesters then began to walk in the direction of the neighbouring district of Wanchai, before being pushed back by firing tear gas and pepper spray, according to AFP reporters on site. At least one protester was arrested.
This is the month that Hong Kong island had been the theatre of this sort of confrontations, especially in recurrent 2019.
The ex-british colony has had from June to December in its worst political crisis since its handover in Beijing in 1997, with actions and events on an almost daily basis, and sometimes violent.
Although reinforced by the triumph of the “pro-democracy” in the local elections of November, this mobilization is stopped at the beginning of the year because of the thousands of arrests made by the police and, more importantly, for the restrictions of gathering ordered to fight against the coronavirus.
“We’re back! See you in the streets on the 24th of may,” said Saturday, a graffiti on a wall close to the metro station of Kowloon Tong.
The police had, however, warned that it would intervene against any unlawful gathering, under such restrictions imposed against the Covid-19 that prohibit gathering in public with more than eight people.
“The police will deploy tomorrow with staff in the appropriate areas, will work resolutely for the maintenance of public order and make arrests” appropriate”, have announced Saturday, the forces of law and order in a press release.
“I am very afraid”
Hong Kong enjoys considerable autonomy compared to the rest of the country led by the communist Party of china (CPC), under the concept of “One country, two systems”, which had led to its handover by London in 1997.
Its residents enjoy the freedom of expression, freedom of the press and an independent judiciary. Of unknown rights in mainland China.
This model is supposed to last until 2047, but a number of hong Kong denouncing for years of the interference of increasingly large Beijing.
Many see the passage in force of Beijing on the issue of the law on the national security sprain is the most serious, to this day, to the semi-autonomous hong kong.
Article 23 of the “basic Law”, which is used in the last two decades of the mini-Constitution to the territory’s semi-autonomous, requires that the region adopts a law on the security.
But this clause has never been applied. Because a large part of the hong Kong sees it as a threat to their freedoms. The last attempt of the executive to hong kong’s implementation of article 23, in 2003, had failed in the face of demonstrations.
The opponents to the text fear, in particular, a clause that would allow chinese policemen to conduct investigations in Hong Kong with their counterparts in hong kong. Many see it as the beginnings of a repression of any dissent in the territory.
“I am very afraid, but it is necessary to express”, said on Sunday in the crowd Christy Chan, 23 years old.
The draft resolution will be submitted to the vote of the chinese parliament on Thursday, during the closing session of the current parliamentary session. The outcome is not in doubt, the assembly being submitted to the PCC.