Police Storm Hong Kong University, Threaten to Use Lethal Force

-edited

As demonstrators occupy Polytechnic University throw Molotov cocktails, police threaten lethal force to stop the riots.

Hong Kong protests have been going on for 5 months now. The university is merely the latest escalation.

The Wall Street Journal reports Hong Kong Police Try to Storm University in Bid to Retake Campus From Protesters.

Large fires burned at a university here early Monday as police threatened lethal force and advanced on a group of increasingly militant pro-democracy activists armed with makeshift weapons who have occupied the campus for days.

Protesters inside the campus of Hong Kong Polytechnic University hurled Molotov cocktails as police tried to storm the grounds early Monday. The entryway and areas around the university’s perimeter were quickly engulfed in flames. One protester shown on live video was seen firing an arrow at the officers.

In some of the fiercest clashes since protests began in the Chinese-ruled city five months ago, police used on Sunday water-cannon blasts, tear gas and beanbag rounds against students who started a massive fire on a bridge, shot a police officer in the leg with an arrow and set fire to an armored car.

As the fighting continued, police said they would fire their guns if attacked by people police Superintendent Louis Lau described as “coldblooded rioters.”

“We don’t want to fight a war, but we have no choice,” said an activist manning the barricades at the university over the weekend, a 16-year-old high-school student wearing a black balaclava and protective goggles who gave his name as Quentin. “We want freedom, human rights.”

Police have responded with escalating force, shooting three protesters since the protests began.

Trapped Inside

The Guardian Live blog notes Hong Kong protest: police fire rounds of tear gas at protesters trying to leave campus

Mass arrests in Tsim Sha Tsui as Poly U remains under siege

Over the past two hours, attention has turned to the streets of Tsim Sha Tsui – outside Poly U – where over a hundred people have been arrested and detained in public.

As those inside the campus continue their standoff with police, dozens of people outside, who have variously been trying to reach the university, provide support or ask police to lift the siege, have been arrested.

A senior US official has also condemned the “unjustified use of force” in Hong Kong in recent days, and said they are monitoring the situation.

Earlier, the university president, Professor Teng Jin-guang, said he had negotiated a temporary suspension of the use of force with the police and urged protesters to “leave the campus in a peaceful manner”.

But as protesters tried to leave the university, at 8.30am, they were stopped by “round after round” of tear gas, lasting a few minutes, forcing them back inside.

Protesters are now currently still inside the university campus, fearing that they will be trapped and arrested en masse by police.

The police say the students are free to go, but the students say they are trapped inside.

Here are the conditions under which students are free to leave

Police say they fired tear gas because the protesters had thrown petrol bombs and “charged” at the police.

Those are both sides of the story. Pick one or neither.

Background

On June 16, I commented Two Million Protesters Flood Streets of Hong Kong: What's It All About?

Protests began a week ago when the Hong Kong government passed a bill authorizing extraditions to mainland China.

The extradition legislation would allow residents and visitors to be sent for trial in China’s Communist-controlled courts, effectively squashing freedom of speech.

Hong Kong's chief, Carrie Lam, rescinded the bill and even issued a rare apology following a week of massive protests, but that is not enough.

The protesters demand the resignation of Lam who insisted on pushing through the legislation despite the initial public outcry.

On August 12, I commented Protesters Swarm Hong Kong Airport All Flights Canceled

Hong Kong Recession

One has to wonder how much longer it will be before China takes matters into its hands.

Mike "Mish" Shedlock

Comments (34)
No. 1-15
Country Bob
Country Bob

China is in a lose-lose situation.

  • Let Hong Kong do its own thing, Beijing looks weak and irrelevant.

  • Storm Hong Kong with soldiers, and the brain drain turns into a deluge and sends a warning shot to the entrepreneur groups in Shanghai and Tianjin. All of the economic growth in China is in these three regions, while 75% of China still lives in 3rd world poverty (talk about income inequality!!!)

China also needs to be worried about the entrepreneurs in countries considering getting involved in the Road and Belt initiative. The NBA is a USA based entertainment complex, but was told to shut up and toe the line by Beijing.

No one doubts the Chinese military could have ended the protests weeks ago -- but doing so has enormous risks.

China will win the battle, but lose the war.

.

PS -- Chinese businesses are no longer able to launder money via California real estate, and they were pushed out of Vancouver a year or two ago. Hong Kong residents continue looking for new places to launder money and get it out of China -- this attack on Hong Kong will make the exodus far more urgent

Bill_Butlicker
Bill_Butlicker

The three words I would describe you as, are difficult, hostile and definitely difficult!!!

Greggg
Greggg

aka: Pyrotechnic University. China thought they would just roll in and take it over. They are fighting hard on both sides because it is the internet hub for Hong Kong. Control the information and you control everything.

Six000mileyear
Six000mileyear

The use of deadly force in Hong Kong give President Trump all the ammo he needs for trade negotiations, or an outright boycott of Chinese made goods.

leicestersq
leicestersq

Just a couple of thoughts.

Does China want to weaken Hong Kong economically? If the cities nearby become much richer than HK, I would expect to see migration out of HK to those cities. Those other cities like Shanghai and Shenzen dont appear to have this independence streak, so taking down HK slowly by destroying its economy would appear to have a lot of advantages for China.

Secondly, what do the people of Hong Kong really want right now? The revocation of the extradition rules, independence, British rule? I am not clear, but this looks to me like a cry for independence.

Sechel
Sechel

The original intention of the Hong Kong governor in enacting the extradition law seems to have been well intentioned but yet misguided. Yes there was no way to deal with the Taiwan offender but Hong Kong residents quickly realized the law could be applied to strip them of their rights and extradite them to China for harsher justice. They grew up in a society based in part by Western standards of justice and rights. China sees a run-away and lawless province and is struggling with how to deal with the situation. Hong Kong probably feels they contributed greatly to China in their economic output and wealth. Lots of parallels to what's going in Catalonia and Spain. There's probably a war of ideas going on between the policy makers and the old line Generals in China which if this situation is not resolved soon and peacefully will end really badly. In the background is Taiwan who China hopes to get back in the fold and a heavy hand in Hong Kong will end those dreams for decades to come.

Bill_Butlicker
Bill_Butlicker

Nobody tell @Sechel that Taiwan isn't part of Hong Kong...

@Sechel has his tinfoil hat on, his box of crayons is open, and he is ready to blame Putin for everything so @Sechel and Trump can live happily ever after

CynaKelley
CynaKelley

A rather strange reaction to the new law. After all, this will not affect law-abiding residents of China, so what's the problem? Bomb the city, throw Molotov cocktails at other residents of your country? Scary. I hope everything will return to normal soon. By the way, if you are looking for an academic essay on a relevant topic like this, with the most correct information, https://gradesking.com/write-my-essay-online/ - I advise you to contact them

thimk
thimk

are these property destructive riots caused by disgruntled hong konger's or some funded activist group(e.g. Soros funded NGO) ? In any event china does a biggly amount of export to Hong Kong and probably uses the banking system to gain access to US dollars. certainly not a favorable condition for the world economy and china itself.

ksdude69
ksdude69

My bet is they are trapped inside and will be used as examples when they try leaving.
Still care to turn your guns in?

CorporateSlave
CorporateSlave

Students are at Poly U because all of hong kongs internet runs through some servers there, so the Chinese want to get control of information access and monitoring by getting into Poly U. The students know this, which was their original reason for going there. Pretty clear now that they are trapped/if they get arrested may spend ten years in jail.

abend237-04
abend237-04

Hong Kong is dying as an outpost of the west. It's tragic, heartbreaking to watch, and absolutely unavoidable. The CCP simply cannot run the risk of appearing to compromise with Hong Kong...anymore than they could with the Uighurs, Tibet, IP theft, etc., etc.

Bam_Man
Bam_Man

My wife's family is from Hong Kong. They had their property seized and were put in interment camps for the duration of the war by the Japanese. Her grandfather was sent to Japan to work as a slave laborer in a lead mine and died there. They feel they are tragically seeing history repeat itself.

djhowls
djhowls

Honk Honk is going to get stomped. The Chinese don't give a dingos kidneys about optics The West will not do a thing t

Ken Kam
Ken Kam

It looks like all the comments here are from people who barely know Hong Kong. The original protest against the extradition was genuinely supported by the majority. But the current violent protestors are a tiny proportion of the population and the huge silent majority certainly DO NOT support them. Local majority is very angry at the wanton destruction and violence against bystanders who disagree with the violent protestors. The police have been incredibly restrained and professional. If such violence and vandalism happened anywhere else, including the US, UK or Australia, there would be a few dead by now. There is documented evidence of US govt funding the protestors (check the HK Cantonese press and some Cantonese videos). China is not doing anything overt yet, and will not do anything. They don't need Hong Kong, HK needs China!