Hong Kong strike devolves into violence after protester is shot
Hong Kong - A citywide strike devolved into chaotic scenes of
flaming barricades and tear gas in sedveral Hong Kong districts after
a male protester was shot in the torso by a police officer Monday
Hong Kong's hospital authority told dpa that a protester injured by a
gunshot wound was in critical condition Monday morning.
Police later confirmed that an officer discharged his revolver and
shot one male, in a statement.
The incident marks the third time a protester has been shot with a
live round since protests broke out in June over a now-withdrawn
A video circulating online showed what appeared to be a police
officer shooting a protester at close range in the chest that morning
in a video circulating online. The protester, who looks unarmed, then
slumps to the ground.
The shooting spurred online speculation that restrictions on officers
using firearms were relaxed in order to curb Monday's strike, but
police denied this in a statement.
"Online rumours stated that Police management have ordered frontline
officers to recklessly use their firearms in today's operations," the
"Police clarifies that this allegation is totally false and
malicious. Police has strict guidelines and orders regarding the use
The strike was meant to call attention to the death of a student
protester, which many residents believe was indirectly caused by
police as they dispersed an illegal assembly last week.
Protesters began building barricades on major thoroughfares and
vandalizing tunnel entry points around 7 am (2300 GMT on Sunday) in a
bid to prevent commuters from travelling to work.
In the Sai Wan Ho district, where the shooting occurred, angered
residents and protesters set up barricades, lit fires, and vandalized
a metro station. Police fired tear gas and pepper spray in response.
Police also fired tear gas in Central, the heart of Hong Kong's
financial district, where many office workers without gear had
assembled on Monday to strike in solidarity with black-clad
Another video circulating online shows a man arguing with people with
anti-government views being set on fire by a protester. He is being
treated at a nearby hospital according to the South China Morning
By midday, train lines and buses were crippled by the disruptions,
with suspensions on eight of the territory's 11 train lines,
according to the city's transport app.
Police said in a statement that protesters threw petrol bombs into a
train carriage for the first time. The carriage appeared to be empty
in video footage of the incident.
Classes were cancelled at multiple universities after tear gas was
deployed at the Chinese University of Hong Kong and the Hong Kong
Polytechnic University, according to local media.
Protesters also infiltrated malls as the strike is also meant to
coincide with Singles' Day, China's anti-Valentine's Day holiday
where single people are encouraged to buy themselves gifts.
The Hong Kong protests erupted in June over a now-suspended
extradition bill that would have allowed Hong Kong residents to be
extradited to China.
The demands of the movement later grew to include universal suffrage
and an independent inquiry into police violence against protesters.