Hijacking Public Events
In early June and July 2019, anti-government protests usually began in a peaceful manner before eventually descending into disorder. In August 2019 radical protestors started to equip themselves with personal protective equipment and started making use of petrol bombs which were thrown indiscriminately at Police, civilian crowds, and at public property. On August 31st over 100 petrol bombs were used by protestors.
Attacks on Innocent Citizens
Whilst demanding their own right to exercise their right to self-expression, Rioters have shown that they are not willing to tolerate any expression of views opposed to their own and this has seen innocent citizens who hold different views attacked and even resulted in one death.
On 13th November 2019, a seventy-year-old man died as a result of sustaining serious head injuries after being struck in the head by a brick thrown by protestors at a very close range.
In one incident at the Hong Kong International Airport on 13th August 2019, whilst protestors were attempting to disrupt the operation of the airport. two Mainland Chinese visitors were seized and held hostage by an angry mob. Both had their limbs fastened with cable ties before being repeatedly punched and kicked.
On the 11th of November 2019, a man who had argued with protestors about them damaging the rail station in Ma On Shan was doused with a flammable liquid and set on fire. He sustained third-degree burns on more than 40% of his body. He was taken to hospital in critical condition and was hospitalised for months. The victim has been left with permanent skin and organ damage.
There have been many incidents where citizens on the scene have spoken out about the violence and have been met with savage beatings, petrol bombs, having their faces spray painted black, and having unknown liquids poured over their heads.
Vandalising Banks and Shops
Since August 2019, the sight of rioters setting buildings on fire, vandalising malls, shops, places of work, restaurants, damaging public property, and even looting, particularly premises with links to the mainland PRC or know to be supportive of the HK SAR government, has, unfortunately, become routine sight especially during weekends and this has caused widespread public fear in what was one of the safest and stable cities in the world.
Physical Attacks on Police
To date, more than 2000 people, including 500 Police officers, have sustained injuries and one elderly man has been sadly killed during the protests. It is now not uncommon for radical protestors to attack police officers on or off duty and routinely make use of an array of offensive weapons to do so. In mid-October 2019, for the first time, a radio-controlled improvised explosive device (IED) was used to target officers in the busy district of Mongkok. In one of the most appalling cases so far, a rioter slashed an officer in the neck with a box cutter in an attempt to take his life. Officers have been attacked with slingshots and steel balls, and in other incidents have had rioters dousing them in corrosive liquids, with one sustaining third-degree burns and having to undergo a skin graft. During the unlawful occupation of Hong Kong Polytechnic University (HKPolyU) a Media Liason Officer was hit by an arrow in the leg. Lucky to not be hit elsewhere and possibly killed. Other officers have been viciously attacked for merely speaking to the organisers of events.
Paralysing the Transport System
A frequent tactic of the protestors has been their regular attempts to disrupt the Hong Kong transport system. To achieve this, they have erected barricades on main roads, including major roads such as Nathan Road which connects the busier districts in Kowloon, Damaged traffic lights, and hampered the functioning of the Mass Transit Railway (MTR) which has been completely or partially shut down on numerous occasions as rioters have rampaged through underground and overland stations, destroying key facilities, intimidating staff and tampering with rail track. Such activity has often been aimed at the rush hour in an effort to stop ordinary citizens from being able to make it into work.
As mentioned before, On the 13th of August 2019 hundreds of protestors converged on Hong Kong’s international airport with the intention of pushing their demands on visitors arriving in and departing from Hong Kong. The large-scale unlawful assembly in the airport resulted in travelers being able to depart and in the cancellation or re-scheduling of hundreds of flights thereby causing immense disruption and possible financial loss to innocent travelers to and from Hong Kong and the reputational loss to HKSAR as a reliable aviation hub.
On 11th of November 2019, protestors dropped objects from a bridge within the campus of the Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK) onto the Tolo Highway and East Rail Line thereby causing severe disruption to the transport system linking much of the New Territories and Kowloon for three consecutive days. Such destructive and dangerous actions endanger both the lives and livelihoods of many ordinary innocent citizens.