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Police urged to hold tear gas, rubber bullet demos

2019-08-08 HKT 15:28
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  • Police urged to hold tear gas, rubber bullet demos
Citizens' Press Conference spokeswoman Natasha Lee
A group of anonymous protesters on Thursday held their second press conference, ridiculing the police force's efforts to justify the arrest of a student union leader for having laser pointers, but offering tongue-in-cheek praise for officers' attempts to use scientific methods to back their claims.

At the police's own press conference on Wednesday, officers shone a laser pointer at a piece of ink-blotted paper until it was singed and some smoke came off, in order to demonstrate how dangerous the devices can be if used as "offensive weapons".

They said the pointer they used was one of 10 confiscated from Baptist University Students' Union leader Keith Fong, who was arrested on Tuesday night shortly after buying the items in Sham Shui Po.

A new set of masked protesters, from the newly formed Citizens' Press Conference, told reporters that the police demonstration had shown nothing whatsoever, as no protester has ever "pointed a laser at close range at a police officer who is covered in ink".

But reading out a prepared statement in English, a spokeswoman for the group, who gave her name as Natasha Lee, went on to invite the police to continue their quest for science and fact-finding, by holding further demonstrations showing what happens if people are hit by sponge bullets, bean bags, rubber bullets or tear gas fired from close range.

The protesters also claimed that the police's use of "excessive force" has worsened in recent weeks, warning that journalists, first aiders, and even people simply passing by the scene of a protest are now likely to be swept up in mass arrests.

The group reiterated that the ongoing protests won't stop until the government responds to a number of demands, including the complete withdrawal of the extradition bill and an inquiry into allegations that the police have been using excessive force.

"The Hong Kong government's attempts to achieve the impossible by trying to exhaust the inexhaustible will not prevail," the group said.