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HK protesters plan major rally on Jan 1

HK protesters plan major rally on Jan 1
A protester reacts after police fire tear gas in Jordan district in Hong Kong, on early Dec 25, 2019.
HONG KONG, DEC 27 (IANS) | Publish Date: 12/27/2019 11:56:57 AM IST

The anti-government protesters in Hong Kong have planned a major rally on January 1, 2020, after three straight days of Christmas demonstrations and confrontations with police that led to more than 310 arrests.

The police said they had arrested more than 310 protesters between Tuesday and Thursday, 165 of them on Christmas Eve, including 105 near the force’s headquarters in Wan Chai, on suspicion of taking part in an illegal assembly, the South China Morning Post reported on Friday.

Riot police were out in force on Thursday, with officers spraying blue dye and subduing several protesters.

Meanwhile, the January 1 rally has been organised by the Civil Human Rights Front, which has organised the biggest protests over the past seven months since the unrest began.

The massive protests began on the streets of Hong Kong on June 9 following the introduction of a contentious extradition bill, which was later withdrawn by the government, and have escalated to become a movement that seeks to improve Hong Kong’s democratic mechanisms and to oppose Beijing authoritarianism.

However, some protesters have opted for more radical tactics than peaceful protest and violent clashes with the police have been common.

Protest crisis raises career doubts for expats: The anti-government protest crisis that has rocked Hong Kong since June, has raised career doubts among the expatriates living in the city, a media report said on Friday.

Immigration figures show that 731,082 foreigners were living in Hong Kong in November 2018. A year later, the figure was 726,032, the South China Morning Post said in its report.

The number includes domestic helpers, largely from the Philippines and Indonesia, who totalled to around 400,000.

But so far, there is no evidence of an exodus.

Hong Kong’s protests began in reaction to the government’s proposal in February to amend laws that could have led to legal suspects being extradited to mainland China.

By June, an estimated 2 million people had taken to the streets in mostly peaceful protests against what they saw as a violation of Hong Kong’s autonomy.

 

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