Jump to content
BANGKOK
rooster59

Hong Kong families form peaceful human chains ahead of airport protest

Recommended Posts

Hong Kong families form peaceful human chains ahead of airport protest

By Jessie Pang and Felix Tam

 

2019-08-23T141907Z_1_LYNXNPEF7M15X_RTROPTP_4_HONGKONG-PROTESTS-HUMANCHAIN.JPG

Protesters light up their smartphones as they form a human chain during a rally to call for political reforms in Hong Kong, China, August 23, 2019. REUTERS/Tyrone Siu

 

HONG KONG (Reuters) - Thousands of chanting Hong Kong protesters joined hands to form human chains on Friday in a peaceful protest, with almost three months of anti-government demonstrations showing no sign of let-up across the Chinese-ruled territory.

 

Demonstrators, families young and old, some people masked, some using hand wipes to stay clean, linked hands across different districts as others held up banners thanking overseas nations for supporting "freedom and democracy" in Hong Kong.

 

Their move echoed one on Aug. 23, 1989, when an estimated 2 million people joined arms across the three Baltic states in a protest against Soviet rule that became known as the "Baltic Way" or "Baltic Chain".

 

"I joined the Hong Kong Way because it’s peaceful," said protester Peter Cheung, 27. "This is the 30th anniversary of the Baltic Way. I hope there will be a bigger chance to make an international noise."

 

The protest, which included dozens shining lights from the top of Kowloon's Lion Rock, visible from the main island of Hong Kong, showed the apparent defiance of Hong Kong people after warnings from Communist Party leaders in Beijing and Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam about violence.

 

Police presence was thin and the protest ended promptly at 9 p.m. (1300 GMT).

 

But protesters are also planning a "stress test" of the airport this weekend and some, wearing their traditional black garb, were making their way from the nearby suburban town of Tung Chung on Friday night.

 

The protests, triggered by a now-suspended bill that would have allowed extraditions to China, have plunged the former British colony into its worst crisis since its return to China in 1997 and pose a major challenge for Beijing.

 

The unrest has widened into calls for greater freedom, fuelled by worries about the erosion of rights guaranteed under a "one country, two systems" formula, adopted after the 1997 handover, such as an independent judiciary and the right to protest.

 

The airport, reached by a gleaming suspension bridge carrying both rail and road traffic, was forced to close last week when protesters, barricading passageways with luggage trolleys, metal barriers and other objects, clashed with police.

China's Hong Kong affairs office condemned the mayhem as "near-terrorist acts".

 

"Go to the airport by different means, including MTR, airport bus, taxi, bike and private car to increase pressure on airport transport," protest organisers wrote online on Friday.

 

The Airport Authority published a half-page notice in newspapers urging young people to "love Hong Kong" and said it opposed acts that blocked the airport, adding that it would keep working to maintain smooth operations.

 

Hong Kong's high court extended an order restricting protests at the airport. Some activists had apologised for last week's airport turmoil.

 

The Canadian consulate said it had suspended travel to mainland China for local staff, just days after a Chinese employee of the city's British consulate was confirmed to have been detained in China.

 

Beijing has said that Simon Cheng, the consulate employee, was detained in the border city of Shenzhen neighbouring Hong Kong. It has accused Britain and other Western countries of meddling in its affairs in Hong Kong.

 

Canada's latest travel advisory on Thursday warned of reports of increased screening of travellers' digital devices at border crossings between mainland China and Hong Kong.

 

"HIDDEN AIM"

 

Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Geng Shuang said Canada’s decision not to allow local staff to visit the mainland was one for Canada, which it respected. If people came to China and followed the law, they would have no problems, he told a daily news briefing.

 

"But if you have a hidden aim, and are hatching a sinister plot, then I fear in China you need to be in a state of apprehension and extra careful."

 

The Foreign Correspondents’ Club of China said it had received multiple reports of Chinese border officials detaining journalists and searching their digital devices when travelling between the mainland and Hong Kong. 

 

The protests are taking a toll on Hong Kong's economy and tourism, with the special administrative region on the cusp of its first recession in a decade.

 

Transport Secretary Frank Chan said airport passenger volume from Aug. 1 to Aug. 21 was down 11% from the same period last year, with cargo volume down 14%.

 

Commerce Secretary Edward Yau said visitor arrivals started to fall in mid-July. For Aug. 15 to Aug. 20, arrivals were down 49.6% on the corresponding 2018 period.

 

"It was the fastest and steepest drop in recent years, and the situation is obviously very worrisome," he told reporters.

The protests have caused corporate casualties, most dramatically at the Cathay Pacific <0293.HK> airline, amid mounting Chinese scrutiny of the involvement of some of its staff in protests.

 

Cathay confirmed on Friday that Rebecca Sy, the head of Cathay Dragon's Airlines Flight Attendants' Association, was no longer with the company. Her departure follows the shock resignation of Cathay Chief Executive Rupert Hogg last week.

 

Demonstrators have five demands: withdraw the extradition bill, set up an independent inquiry into the protests and perceived police brutality, stop describing the protests as "rioting", waive charges against those arrested, and resume political reform.

 

Beijing has sent a clear warning that forceful intervention is possible, with paramilitary forces holding drills just over the border.

 

(Reporting by Jessie Pang, Lukas Job, Donny Kwok, Anne Marie Roantree and Twinnie Siu in Hong Kong, Brenda Goh in Shanghai and Ben Blanchard in Beijing; Writing by Nick Macfie; Editing by Robert Birsel and Alison Williams)

 

reuters_logo.jpg

-- © Copyright Reuters 2019-08-24

 

 

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 minute ago, Tug said:

Bless all of you and good luck you are in my heart and thoughts

Yes, they are a race of beautiful people. 

  • Confused 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Shame on these protesters. I am still <deleted> they closed the airport. I am all for freedome. But when they took mine thats it i have no sympathy.

  • Sad 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
23 minutes ago, quadperfect said:

Shame on these protesters. I am still <deleted> they closed the airport. I am all for freedome. But when they took mine thats it i have no sympathy.

Yessum, Bwana.

  • Haha 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Honestly I don't think China will give in to anything. China today is at the height of its power.

   In the bookstore I came across a Chinese book with the title in chinese character (I translate it here) "There are naive people called Hong Kong" When translated into English it doesn't sound funny. But the chinese characters written sound funny because it says there are naive people called Hong kong-  but it is not saying the Hong Kong people are naive, that's funny part.

   It appears people in Hong Kong don't remember their history, since ancient time Chinese Government throughout history had been despotic.

   Fascism is very much alive in China today and it is called "Patriotic".

Do you love China? Yes or No? Who is asking the question?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
19 minutes ago, ylmiri said:

Honestly I don't think China will give in to anything. China today is at the height of its power.

   In the bookstore I came across a Chinese book with the title in chinese character (I translate it here) "There are naive people called Hong Kong" When translated into English it doesn't sound funny. But the chinese characters written sound funny because it says there are naive people called Hong kong-  but it is not saying the Hong Kong people are naive, that's funny part.

   It appears people in Hong Kong don't remember their history, since ancient time Chinese Government throughout history had been despotic.

   Fascism is very much alive in China today and it is called "Patriotic".

Do you love China? Yes or No? Who is asking the question?

 

HK smart $ bought up Canada long time ago ~ seems the only the low bang stragglers left over now 🙂

 

 

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
11 hours ago, quadperfect said:

Shame on these protesters. I am still <deleted> they closed the airport. I am all for freedome. But when they took mine thats it i have no sympathy.

Sometimes inconvenience is a small price for freedom for the greater good.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Those who are rather poorly educated on the position of HK in relation to China need to research ! HK is part of China ! It had a lease with UK that ended in 1997! HK has SAR (special administrative status ) . It is not an independent state ! Amazing to read about all those “illiterates “ talking about “fighting for freedom “

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Thaivisa Connect

 

  • Like 2
  • Sad 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

Okay, the message to the demonstraters in Hong Kong is this.
"Look, you go and cause the city-centre in Hong Kong to grind to a halt, and do it every day, that's up to you, go and do it, but, but leave the airport alone, we the people who are not from Hong Kong, we might have to go through Hong Kong Airport on our way to and from Asia, we do not want our flights cancelled or postponed by you people, you have sympathy from some foreigners, but that sympathy will be quickly reduced if you block our flights". 
"And remember, the only reason why Beijing has not sent in the riot police to clear your demonstrations is because, doing so will make Beijing look bad on the world's media, Beijing does not want to create a poor image of China. But if you take over the airport, you lose sympathy with the foreigners, the foreigners won't be that concerned when you are forcibly removed from the streets".

Notice from the OP that, visitor arrivals in Hong Kong have dropped by about half compared to a year ago. Yes, these demonstrations are destroying Hong Kong's tourism sector.  Is tourism just as important to Hong Kong as it is to Thailand ? I'm not sure. So, the demonstraters are harming Hong Kong's economy. How long are they going to continue ?  Continue damaging Hong Kong's economy ? Do the guys in Beijing really care about how a bunch of Chinese in Hong Kong are damaging Hong Kong's economy ?

Edited by tonbridgebrit
  • Sad 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, tonbridgebrit said:

Okay, the message to the demonstraters in Hong Kong is this.
"Look, you go and cause the city-centre in Hong Kong to grind to a halt, and do it every day, that's up to you, go and do it, but, but leave the airport alone, we the people who are not from Hong Kong, we might have to go through Hong Kong Airport on our way to and from Asia, we do not want our flights cancelled or postponed by you people, you have sympathy from some foreigners, but that sympathy will be quickly reduced if you block our flights". 
"And remember, the only reason why Beijing has not sent in the riot police to clear your demonstrations is because, doing so will make Beijing look bad on the world's media, Beijing does not want to create a poor image of China. But if you take over the airport, you lose sympathy with the foreigners, the foreigners won't be that concerned when you are forcibly removed from the streets".

Notice from the OP that, visitor arrivals in Hong Kong have dropped by about half compared to a year ago. Yes, these demonstrations are destroying Hong Kong's tourism sector.  Is tourism just as important to Hong Kong as it is to Thailand ? I'm not sure. So, the demonstraters are harming Hong Kong's economy. How long are they going to continue ?  Continue damaging Hong Kong's economy ? Do the guys in Beijing really care about how a bunch of Chinese in Hong Kong are damaging Hong Kong's economy ?

Basic law was violated.  Surprised it took this long.  The extradition bill was a huge blunder obviously, handed down by Carry Lam who talks about retiring to the English countryside.  She is an awful roll model for Hong Kong   Beijing and Carry Lam made this mistake, not the Hong Kong people.  So far, given the size of the demonstrations, the violence has been minimal.  The disruptions are just something that needs to put up with, as most of Hong Kong supports the demonstrators. 

 

Even with all this, I prefer China to Thailand as China has more freedom, better opportunities and far less visa hassles.  Oh, almost forgot, alcohol is much cheaper too.

Edited by yellowboat

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Lovely story of families and the elderly all joining hands and wrenching a tear even from the hardest of us. 'Stop calling us rioters, we're peaceful protestors.'

 

No mention of the absolute chaos caused by rioters in Kwun Tong last night, attacking a police station with rocks, bamboo poles and slingshots though.

 

Odd hey?

  • Like 2
  • Sad 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...