On Wednesday, the people of China went uncontrollable due to the extradition bill that would allow people to be sent to mainland China for trial. The people went so angry that they started throwing bottles outside the city legislature just to delay the legislature debate and to that the Hong Kong Police had to fire tear gas and pepper spray at the bottle throwing angry people who charged officers with umbrellas.
The stricken police officers turned downtown Hong Kong into a tear-gas-filled battlefield, as they pushed back against protesters who tried to storm Hong Kong’s Legislative Council.
Based on the report of the Hong Kong city hospital, it is calculated that till date 72 people have been injured.
Many protesters rushed toward a ring of heavily armoured police officers, only to be repelled. The officers warned them by saying, “We will use force” and lashed out with blows, rubber bullets, beanbag rounds, pepper spray and tear gas.
Many of the city’s lawmakers, from both the pro-democracy camp that opposes the extradition legislation and the pro-Beijing majority that supports it, failed to arrive at the council for a scheduled debate on Wednesday morning after protesters surrounded the complex and blocked traffic. The council later said the debate was postponed until further notice. Though a number of protesters turned to violence, the majority were peaceful. The police’s use of tear gas and rubber bullets was a turning point in their response to the demonstrations and reflected the government’s determination to keep the legislature from being overrun.
Opposition to the bill on Sunday triggered Hong Kong’s biggest political demonstration since its handover from British to Chinese rule in 1997 under a “one country, two systems” deal guaranteeing its special autonomy, including freedom of assembly, free pass and the impendent judiciary.
The police have not acknowledged using rubber bullets against protesters for decades. Five years ago, when tear gas was used against a student democracy protest, it incited public fury that brought tens of thousands of people onto the streets. That movement turned into a sustained occupation of several commercial districts for months in Hong Kong known as the Umbrella Movement, referring to the shield of choice used to fend off police pepper spray.
Many people skipped work, school and university to join the protest rally. Stones were also thrown from the financial centre.
After that on Thursday, Hong Kong braced for the possibility of more violence. Many protestors gathered in the park near the facility but the number of protestors that appeared was far less.