A 14-year-old boy has been shot by a police officer at close range during clashes tonight, according to local reports.
The cop, said to be off duty, was besieged, attacked and set ablaze by a group of masked demonstrators, who hurled petrol bombs at him.
An unverified social media clip shows the man wearing a white T-shirt being beaten to the ground and then desperately running away from the flames after being assaulted in the middle of the road.
Rampages have erupted across Hong Kong as demonstrators in defiance of a new mask ban attacked Chinese bank outlets, vandalised subway stations and set street fires, prompting police to respond with tear gas.
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Violence has broken out in Hong Kong Friday night after masked protesters took to the streets to defy a new law prohibiting activists from wearing masks during rallies. Pictured, a masked demonstrator set a fire at the entrance of a subway station
The city’s government has barred demonstrators from having their faces covered with an emergency law, but hardcore activists ignored the ban and still protested with masks. Pictured, activists burn items at the entrance of a metro station
Social media footage shows one man wearing a white T-shirt besieged, beaten and set ablaze by a group of masked demonstrators. Local news site Apple Daily reported that the man being attacked was an off-duty police officer who had shot a young man during clashes caused by a traffic accident. Onlookers then threw petrol bombs at the suspected cop
Protesters burn items outside the Causeway Bay metro station as people hit the streets after the city launched a ban on masks
Riot police arrive at Causeway Bay area as people defy the government’s ban on face masks and rally across the financial hub
A protester looks on while wearing a mask in Admiralty district late on October 4 during a rally against the anti-mask law
A protester gestures with an umbrella during a rally against an anti-mask law meant to deter anti-government protesters
Anti-government protesters wearing masks smash Mong Kok Mass Transit Railway (MTR) station during a demonstration
According to 01HK.com, the police officer works for the criminal investigation department.
He was said to be inside his private car in the city’s Yuen Long district at around 8pm when protesters spotted him and started to smash his car windows to attack him.
The officer then got surrounded and assaulted by a large crowd. He opened fire during the chaos, the report said.
Footage released by 01HK shows bystanders screaming and fleeing after a gunshot was heard from the centre of the crowd, thought to be fired by the officer. It was unclear if the boy was shot at the time.
The officer was then attacked by activists who threw the first petrol bomb at him. As he was making phone calls to ask for support, activists hurled another petrol bomb.
Police said the officer opened fire to protect his own life after being beaten to the ground by a large crowd and faced serious danger.
Hong Kong’s leader Carrie Lam has banned pro-democracy protesters from wearing masks during rallies in a bid to curb the city’s escalating violence caused by months-long anti-government unrest. Pictured, masked protesters march in the street on Friday as they take part in a rally held to show opposition to the new rule announced by the Lam at a press conference
A Hong Kong police official says a 14-year-old boy was shot in the thigh during widespread demonstrations against a ban on face masks.
He says police are trying to verify if the boy was hit by a stray bullet or shot by a police officer who fired his gun after being attacked by a large group of protesters Friday night.
The official requested anonymity because he isn’t authorized to speak to the news media.
The Hospital Authority says a 14-year-old boy was hospitalized in serious condition. The authority didn’t provide details.
Police told 01HK.com that activists tried to seize the officer’s gun which he had dropped on the ground during the tussles.
An 18-year-old student activist was seriously wounded after being shot in the chest with a live bullet by police on Tuesday, sparking fury among protesters.
The city’s police have reportedly been given more liberty to use force to deal with protesters in difficult situations.
A demonstrator wearing a face mask gestures while people gather in the Admiralty area to protest against the anti-mask law
China has warned the ‘Hong Kong chaos cannot continue indefinitely’ and ‘a critical time has arrived to end the violence’ after the city’s leader Carrie Lam today invoked colonial-era emergency law to prohibit protesters from wearing masks.
Immediately after Lam’s announcement, thousands of people defiantly took to the streets – still with their face covered – as they chanted ‘Hong Kongers, resist’.
Lam’s latest move aims to curb the city’s escalating violence caused by anti-government demonstrations that have lasted for nearly four months.
This is the first time the city’s government has used emergency powers in more than 50 years in a dramatic move intended to quell intensifying unrest.
An anti-government protester wears a mask during a demonstration in Wong Tai Sin district to denounce the new regulation
Anti-government protesters burn a banner that commemorates the 70th anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic of China on October 4 after Lam announced the new law to ban demonstrators from wearing masks during protests
What is Hong Kong’s mask ban?
Hong Kong residents have been banned from wearing masks during rallies.
The rule applies to people at ‘illegal’ gatherings who use violence and exempts those who wear masks for ‘legitimate need’.
Protesters will also be prohibited from painting their faces to hide their identity.
Police will have the power to ask a person to remove their masks and those who resist can be sentenced for up to six months
The ban covers any procession with over 30 people and assemblies of more than 50 people.
The ban carries a penalty of up to a year in jail.
The Beijing-backed leader said the decision would come into force on Saturday, adding: ‘We must stop the violence’.
Offenders could face up to a year in jail and protesters will also be prohibited from painting their faces to hide their identity.
Lam made the announcement exactly one month after promising to withdraw an extradition bill which caused the movement.
Prominent democracy activist Joshua Wong said the law ‘marks the beginning of the end of Hong Kong’.
A spokesperson from Beijing said it was ‘extremely necessary’ to set up the law to combat ‘violent and criminal’ activities in the city. Beijing again blamed the unrest on foreign forces.
Some activists were said to be handing out masks to participants in an act of defiance to the government’s measures, reported local media.
Students gathered in shopping malls around the city to sing ‘Glory to Hong Kong’, an unofficial anthem of the pro-democracy movement to show their disapproval.
Rallies were reported across the city, including the areas of Admiralty, Central, Wan Chai, Causeway Bay, Prince Edward and Mong Kok.
Protesters marched through the streets peacefully while shouting ‘covering faces is no crime, legislation is unreasonable’ and ‘fight for freedom, stand with Hong Kong’.
Cathay Pacific, the city’s flag carrier, has announced to suspend its in-town check-in service amid wide-spread chaos, which saw activists blocking the road and burn banners celebrating China’s 70 years of Communist rule.
Immediately defying the ban set to take effect Saturday, thousands of activists cram streets shouting ‘Hong Kongers, resist’
Chief executive Lam has used sweeping security legislation which has not been invoked since Hong Kong riots in 1967, allowing her to bypass the city’s legislature. Pictured, anti-government protesters block a street to oppose to the ban
A combo picture shows protesters wearing face masks during pro-democracy protests which started at the beginning of June
A man wearing a mask and holding a British flag joins protesters as they gather in the city centre after the ban was announced
A masked protester sets fire to a banner celebrating China’s 70th founding anniversary after the ban was announced
A woman holds up a handbill as protesters gather in the street in the heart of Hong Kong’s commercial district on October 4
Protesters carry on wearing masks as they block a street after the city’s government passed a new law to curb demonstrations
Students wear masks and chant slogans as one of them holds a sign saying ‘Liberate Hong Kong; revolution of our times’
A masked protester sits near graffiti saying ‘no justice, no peace’ during a protest in Hong Kong on October 4
People wearing face masks walk past debris earlier burnt by protesters in the street in the heart of Hong Kong on October 4
An anti-government protester wearing a mask attends a lunch time protest after local media reported on the expected ban
A woman wearing a Guy Fawkes mask joins people taking part in a protest against a potential government ban on protesters wearing face masks in Hong Kong on October 4. Many activists wear face masks to hide their identities and avoid tear gas
This is the first time the Hong Kong government has invoked colonial-era emergency powers in more than 50 years. The law, a relic of British rule enacted in 1922 to quell a seamen’s strike which was last used to crush riots in 1967. Pictured, a woman wearing a face mask raises her hand as she joins other demonstrators in a march against the rumoured ban on October 4
Pro-democracy demonstrators march from Chater Garden during a protest against a potential government ban on October 4
Hong Kong’s richest man donates £100m to firms hurt by unrest
Hong Kong’s wealthiest man will donate more than £100 million to local businesses hurt by the city’s ongoing chaos.
This summer’s protests, sparked by rising public anger towards Beijing’s rule, has battered the economy of the Asian financial hub.
Li Ka-shing’s announcement came shortly before the city’s chief executive Carrie Lam announced a law banning face masks in public.
The 91-year-old billionaire said small and medium-sized businesses would benefit from the fund, worth HK$1 billion (£104 million, US$128 million).
The donation will be distributed in partnership with the government.
Many pro-democracy demonstrators have worn face masks to hide their identities and shield themselves from tear gas which has been regular occurrences on the street across the city.
The Hong Kong government is taking a tougher stance over the territory’s most disruptive crisis since it reverted to Chinese rule in 1997.
Rampages erupted this week after a student protester was shot in the chest with a live round by police and later charged with rioting and assaulting an officer.
Lam decried the recent escalation of violence at a press conference this afternoon.
‘People are asking can Hong Kong go back to normal? Is Hong Kong still a place where we can have our sweet home?’ Lam asked as she announced the ban.
She said the ban targeted violent protesters and rioters and ‘will be an effective deterrent to radical behavior’.
The decision applies to people at ‘illegal’ gatherings who use violence and exempts those who wear masks for ‘legitimate need’. Lam said she would go to the legislature later to get legal backing for the rule.
But a government document detailing the move says it will not only cover unauthorised or illegal assemblies, but also apply to gatherings approved by police.
The document was given to reporters during Lam’s news conference.
Activists in Hong Kong will no longer be able to conceal their identity with masks from Saturday. Pictured left, an anti-government protester wearing a mask attends a lunch time protest on October 4. Pictured right, a student wears a helmet with writings reading ‘Liberate Hong Kong, revolution of our time’ during a demonstration in Hong Kong on September 9
Lam said the ban was her own government’s call, not an order from Beijing. She denied the act was a step closer to authoritarian rule, saying she used a valid legislation to restore order. Pictured, anti-government protesters wear face masks on Friday during a march attended by thousands to show their opposition to the government’s new law to ban rally masks
The United Nations human rights office has said that any new government measures in Hong Kong must be grounded in law and protect the right to freedom of assembly. Pictured right, a masked anti-government protester is pictured in Central in Hong Kong on October 4. Pictured right, a student wears an eye patch and a mask during a protest on September 30
Lam, who attended China’s National Day festivities in Beijing this week, said the ban was her own government’s call, not an order from Beijing.
She reiterated she would not quit, saying her departure would not resolve the crisis.
She denied the act was a step closer to authoritarian rule, saying she used a valid legislation to restore order.
The leader also urged the international community to understand her government’s plight and have ‘sympathy’.
China today condemned the ‘reckless and criminal behaviour’ by some Hong Kong activists.
Yang Guang, a spokesman for China’s Hong Kong and Macao Affairs Office of the State Council, said in Beijing that it was evident that the protests were becoming a ‘colour revolution’ with the interference from ‘external forces’.
Yang said: ‘Some street resistance is turning in the direction of masterminded, planned and organised violence crimes and has seriously threatened public safety.’
He described the mask ban as ‘lawful, reasonable, equitable’ and ‘extremely necessary’.
Lam decried the recent escalation of violence at a press conference (pictured) after clashes erupted across the city this week
The mask ban marks a dramatic toughening in the government’s response to the most serious crisis to affect the hub for international trade and business since the territory reverted from British to Chinese rule in 1997. Pictured, pro-democracy protesters march on a street as they take part in a rally in Central district on October 4 before the decision is announced
The ban applies to people at ‘illegal’ gatherings who use violence and exempts those who wear masks for ‘legitimate need’. Pictured, pro-democracy protesters march on a street as they take part in a rally in Central district on October 4
Hong Kong teen shot by police was ‘rioting’, prosecutor says
The 18-year-old protester shot in the chest by Hong Kong police this week was throwing bricks and ‘rioting’ at the time he was wounded, a prosecutor told a court on Friday.
Tsang Chi-kin was shot at close range on Tuesday as he fought officers with what appeared to be a white pole.
He has been charged with rioting, which carries a maximum 10-year sentence, and assaulting an officer.
The prosecutor said Tsang was more violent than others who have attended recent rallies.
The city’s Secretary for Security John Lee Ka-Chiu said the mask ban would carry a jail sentence for up to a one year or a fine of up to HK$25,000 (£2,584).
He said protesters would also be prohibited from painting their faces to hide their identity.
He added police would have the power to ask a person to remove their masks and those who resist can be sentenced for up to six months.
The ban covers any procession with over 30 people and assemblies of more than 50 people, according to Lee.
Yesterday, local media reported that Lam planned to bypass the legislature to announce the ban under emergency powers to quash the city’s chaos.
Thousands of people, all wearing masks, chanted slogans calling for greater democracy as they marched in the city’s business district during lunch time ahead of Lam’s press conference.
One protester told reporters: ‘Will they arrest 100,000 people on the street? The government is trying to intimidate us but at this moment, I don’t think the people will be scared.’
Masked protesters chant slogans calling for greater democracy as they marched in the city’s business district on October 4
Protesters hold up their hands to represent their movement’s five demands as they oppose to the city’s plan to ban masks
One protester holds a sign that reads ‘Hong kong is the land of the brave and we are braaaaaave’ at a demonstration on Friday
Analysts have warn the use of the Emergency Ordinance for the first time in more than half a century could set a dangerous precedent. Pictured, anti-government office workers wearing masks attend a lunch time protest in Hong Kong’s Central
Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam (front, middle) announced the decision at a press conference with other city officials
The ban was passed under a colonial-era emergency law known as The Emergency Regulations Ordinance.
The law, a relic of British rule enacted in 1922 to quell a seamen’s strike which was last used to crush riots in 1967, gives broad powers to the city’s chief executive to implement regulations in an emergency.
Analysts have warned that the use of the Ordinance for the first time in more than half a century could set a dangerous precedent.
Activists and many legislators have also concerned the ban could be counter-productive, impractical and difficult to enforce in a city bubbling with anger and where tens of thousands have often defied police bans on rallies to take to the streets.
The demonstrations in Hong Kong were initially sparked at the beginning of June by a proposed law that would allow some criminal suspects to be sent to the mainland China to stand trial. It has since snowballed into a wider democratic movement. Pictured, pro-democracy demonstrators hold up their hands to symbolise their five demands during a protest on October 4
The unrest has turned into an anti-China campaign amid anger over what many view as Beijing’s interference in Hong Kong. Pictured, anti-government office workers wearing masks attend a lunch time protest in the Central district on October 4
The government last month withdrew the extradition bill, widely slammed as an example of the erosion of Hong Kong’s freedom, but protesters have widened their demands. Pictured, masked protesters carrying American flag march in the city
Police relax guidelines for using force
Hong Kong police loosened guidelines on the use of force by officers in the run-up to demonstrations on October 1, according to documents seen by Reuters.
The move would give officers greater power to deal with protesters in difficult situations.
In the documents, the police manual changed some guidelines on how officers could act when considering force.
It also removed a line that stated officers should be accountable for their actions.
Willy Lam, an adjunct professor at the Chinese University of Hong Kong, said: ‘Even though the mask ban is just a small move under the Emergency Ordinance, it is a dangerous first step.
‘If the anti-mask legislation proves to be ineffective, it could lead the way to more draconian measures such as a curfew and other infringement of civil liberties.’
‘This is a watershed. This is a Rubicon,’ pro-democracy lawmaker Claudia Mo told AFP.
‘And I’m worried this could be just a starter. More draconian bans in the name of law could be lurking around the corner.’
‘It is ironic that a colonial-era weapon is being used by the Hong Kong government and the Chinese Communist Party,’ Joshua Wong, a leading activists who has been jailed a number of times, told AFP.
The United Nations human rights office said that any new government measures in Hong Kong must be grounded in law and protect the right to freedom of assembly.
Referring to the situation in the financial hub, UN human rights spokeswoman Marta Hurtado told a briefing in Geneva on Friday: ‘Any restriction must have a basis in law and be proportionate and as least intrusive as possible.’
She added: ‘Freedom of peaceful assembly is a fundamental right and should be enjoyed without restriction to the greatest extent possible.’
‘Five demands, not one less!’ many protesters shouted during Friday’s rallies. Picture, anti-government office workers wearing masks attend a lunch time protest, after local media reported on an expected ban on face masks on October 4
Activists and many legislators have said the mask ban could be counterproductive, impractical and difficult to enforce in a city bubbling with anger and where tens of thousands have often defied police bans on rallies and taken to the streets
The ban followed widespread violence in the city on Tuesday which marred China’s National Day and included a police officer shooting a protester. Pictured, gesture five demands at a rally which include democratic reforms for the city’s government
The ban follows widespread violence in the city which marred China’s National Day and included a police officer shooting a protester, the first victim of gunfire since the protests started in June.
Tsang Chi-kin, 18, was shot at close range as he fought an officer with a pole on Tuesday in Tsuen Wan on one of the most violent days of the ongoing protests.
Police defended the officer’s decision, calling it ‘reasonable and lawful’. A spokesperson said the officer was facing ‘imminent danger’ at the time.
A man wearing a mask takes part in a protest in the Central district in Hong Kong on October 4 with thousands other people
An anti-government protester wears a mask depicting US president Donald Trump during a Global Anti-totalitarianism Rally in Hong Kong on September 29. Protesters wearing masks during rallies may be jailed for up to one year starting tomorrow
Anti-government protesters open up umbrellas, a symbol of pro-democracy movement in Hong Kong, as they block a street
Prominent democracy activist Joshua Wong (pictured today) said the law ‘marks the beginning of the end of Hong Kong’
Tsang has undergone surgery. According to his lawyer, he is in a hospital intensive care unit in a stable condition.
He has been charged with attacking police and rioting. The latter carries a maximum 10-year sentence.
It has been revealed that the city’s police loosened guidelines on the use of force by officers in the run-up to demonstrations on October 1.