National Day fireworks show cancelled - RTHK
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National Day fireworks show cancelled

2019-09-18 HKT 16:51
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  • The fireworks show at Victoria Harbour is an annual feature of National Day celebrations. File photo: AFP
    The fireworks show at Victoria Harbour is an annual feature of National Day celebrations. File photo: AFP
The government said on Wednesday that this year's National Day fireworks display in Victoria Harbour has been cancelled.

A brief statement said the decision was taken "in view of the latest situation and having regard to public safety".

Hundreds of thousands of people usually gather at vantage points on either side of the harbour to watch the annual show, which was themed "unity and harmony" last year.

The cancellation, amid the ongoing anti-government protests, comes despite this year marking the 70th anniversary of the founding of the People's Republic of China.

The October 1 fireworks display was also cancelled in 2014, when the city was gripped by the pro-democracy Occupy movement, as well as in 2013 following the Lamma ferry disaster.

This year's National Day celebrations in general are expected to be a more low-key affair than usual in Hong Kong, but Beijing is gearing up for a massive show, including a large-scale military parade.

Security had been ramped up in the SAR on July 1 – when the city marked Hong Kong's handover from Britain to China – and the flag-raising ceremony was held indoors amid the continuing unrest.