The honourary chairman of the Liberal Party, James Tien, has called on the government to set up an independent commission of inquiry to specifically look into the July 21 Yuen Long attacks, saying the Hong Kong public is still confused about what actually happened on the day.
Speaking on RTHK’s Backchat programme, Tien said both the pan-democratic and pro-establishment camps, including the police, now have their own versions of what happened there last year, and there’s just no way at this point in time to get to the bottom of the incident.
“The worst incident which affected people and their confidence in the government, is what happened on July 21st and what happened on August 31st. I really think it’s about time that our Chief Executive Carrie Lam have the guts to set up an independent commission of inquiry, headed by a retired judge, just to look into specifically, 7.21 and 8.31”, he said.
The August 31 incident at Prince Edward station was considered another highly sensitive issue.
Riot police stormed the MTR station on that day, wielding batons and pepper spraying commuters inside train carriages and on the platform, leaving dozens injured.
Journalists were evicted from the station, and fire services medics were denied entry into the station for about an hour, raising questions about what happened inside the MTR facility and even fuelling speculation that people had been killed by officers. The government has repeatedly denied this.
Meanwhile, the pro-establishment heavyweight also called on the government and the Department of Justice to weigh their evidence carefully and consider their chances of successful prosecutions, before bringing to court the cases related to the July 21 attacks.
Without mentioning specific names, he said some high-profile arrests had raised eyebrows and sparked accusations of malicious prosecutions.
“I really hope that the government, together with the police and Teresa Cheng (Secretary for Justice), have enough evidence to take them to court and come up with sort of a reasonable case. Because if the government loses heavily, I think the image of Hong Kong will be even worse”, he said.
James Tien calls for independent Yuen Long probe
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