Hong Kong protesters return to the streets after the electoral calm
HONG KONG: Hong Kong Demonstrators in favor of democracy returned to the streets on Sunday for a series of marches and demonstrations after a rare period of calm in almost six months of unrest.
Sunday demonstrations occurred after brief skirmishes broke out during the night, with a man assaulted while trying to clear the barricades and police firing tear gas for the first time since the November 24 elections of the district council that saw the candidates Pro-Democrats win a landslide.
Three events are planned for Sunday, including a march to the US consulate to thank US leaders for the legislation that supports the city's protest movement.
A night march will reiterate the five demands of the movement, which include direct elections for the legislature and the leadership of the city, and an investigation into the alleged police brutality against the protesters.
I just want to remind everyone that despite the small victory in district council election, we must not forget why we started all this and we must return to our main theme - reclaim Hong Kong, revolution of our times; five demands, not one less, an organizer of the evening rally wrote on the Reddit-like LIHKG forum.
The police issued permits called letters of no objection for the three events, including a morning demonstration for children and older adults that took place without incident, and the publication urged people to remain at peace.
I want to beg everyone to remain highly restricted during the hours covered by the no objection letter. Otherwise, he could be accused of inciting disturbances, the organizer wrote in the anonymously written publication.
On Saturday night, police fired three rounds of tear gas for the first time since the elections, after protesters blocked neighborhood roads.
Police have fired more than 12,000 cans of tear gas since the protests began, and gas masks have become a must for demonstrators, but they are often grounds for arrest if discovered.
A video that appeared online also showed a protester brutally attacking a man while trying to clear a barricade.
The commentator mocks the man, who stumbles and then collapses after being hit in the head with a heavy metal object, blood dripping from a wound.
In a radio interview on Sunday morning, police chief Tang Ping-keung said an attack occurred in Mong Kok.
I could have killed him, Tang said.
A police source confirmed that the incident seen in the video occurred in Mong Kok on Saturday night and was under investigation.
The man's condition was not immediately clear. But hospital officials said three people were taken on Saturday night with protest-related injuries, one of which was released while the other two were in stable condition.
Protests erupted in Hong Kong nearly six months ago in opposition to a bill that would have allowed extraditions to.
The bill has been withdrawn, but the movement has become broader calls to protect the city's freedoms.