- Hong Kong police warned that planned protests on Tuesday would bring “extreme danger” to the city.
- China on Tuesday is marking the 70th anniversary of the Communist Party, and activists have called for marches across the city in protest.
- Police on Monday claimed without providing evidence that intelligence suggested that some “hardcore violence protesters” were inciting others to murder police, kill civilians, and set fires to gas stations on Tuesday.
- Protest leaders dismissed the claims as fearmongering meant to discourage people from turning up to protest.
- Hong Kong police have been accused of brutality and the unlawful arrests of protesters.
- Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.
Hong Kong police on Monday warned that planned protests in the city were expected to be “very, very dangerous” and claimed that hardline protesters had called on people to murder police and set fire to gas stations.
Hong Kong is bracing for more protests on Tuesday as China’s Communist Party marks its 70th anniversary. The elaborate National Day celebrations, held in Tiananmen Square and some Chinese territories to a smaller extent, have prompted protesters to call for marches across the city. Some protester groups have called for Tuesday marches to be marked as a “Day of Grief.”
Speaking to the press on Monday in both Chinese and English, police said the city was on the verge of “extreme danger.”
“After our analysis, we’re expecting the situation tomorrow to be very, very dangerous,” said Chief Superintendent John Tse Chun-chung.
The superintendent also claimed, without providing evidence, that intelligence pointed to protesters planning extreme measures for upcoming protests.
“We have got intelligence suggesting that some hardcore violence protesters are inciting others, including those with suicidal tendencies, to commit extreme acts like murdering the police, disguising as police officers to kill others, and setting fires to petrol stations, etc.,” he stated.
“With the increase in the intensity and extensity of violence over the last three months, there are apparent signs that hardcore violence will escalate in the near future. All acts are one step closer to terrorism,” he added.
Police also displayed propaganda posters and video previously touted by Chinese state media asserting that Hong Kong protesters planned to kill civilians and officers.
Several protest leaders dismissed the claims as fearmongering. Pro-democracy legislator Claudia Mo called the police claims a “joke.”
“This is Chinese propaganda at play,” she said, according to Associated Press. “The goal is to institute fear in society so that people will be scared to go out. This is a despicable tactic.”
The Civil Human Rights Front, an activist group behind many previous sanctioned protests, had planned a peaceful march for Tuesday but had their permit request rejected. The group said the march was meant to be a “legal and safe” demonstration.
Protests in the Chinese territory have entered into their seventeenth week and have, in some cases, led to violent clashes with police. Thousands of protesters rallied on Saturday to mark the anniversary of the 2014 Umbrella Movement, the largest pro-democracy protests the city had seen until this summer. Fringe groups of protesters hurled Molotov cocktails at police, who responded by firing tear gas and water cannons.
Violent demonstrations continued in the city on Sunday, and rallies were held across Hong Kong, as well as in cities around the world in a show of solidarity. Forty-eight people were sent to the hospital Sunday, the city’s Hospital Authority said, and over 100 protesters were arrested, the South China Morning Post reported, citing police sources.
Hong Kong police have been accused of brutality and the unlawful arrests of protesters. A top police commander told foreign media last month that officers fear that they may need to use lethal force as protests continue to escalate.
“[The officers’] greatest fear is that they might have to kill someone or that they might be killed themselves – it is really that critical,” the source said, according to the Telegraph.
Business Insider Emails & Alerts
Site highlights each day to your inbox.