Bullets aimed at heads, fire first & then disperse - Review of Police's new strategy on 12 June

Bullets aimed at heads, fire first & then disperse - Review of Police's new strategy on 12 June
Translated by HKCT, written by Kwan Chun-hoi
Original: Kwan Chun-hoi's Medium 

"What a pleasure to see that! I thought we only fired during training. That’s real! There it is! (laughs) And I would not allow a “2.0” version to happen." In a video recorded within the police force as obtained by Apple Daily, a police officer seemed to be proud of firing, who "will not allow Umbrella Movement 2.0 to happen", talked with a sense of mission. 

Police and members of the public hold opposite views on firing. I stayed at the scene for 8 hours (10 am-6 pm) on 12 June and could give an analysis on the tactics employed by the Police in dealing with mass movement which was conspicuously different from the recent years. But the first question to be asked, both from the Hongkongers and Police, why firing came first? 

Police were facing the same situation as in the umbrella movement that 5,000 police officers were way less than tens of thousands of Hongkongers. From 3:30pm to 4pm, the force employed a baiting tactic. Front line police officers purposely did not wear gas masks, which projected an illusion of them being slack. Two inspectors in white uniform were assigned in each spot. The message of "no clearance today" was also disseminated to the lawmakers, which further soothed the tension. When protesters were lured into the LegCo Complex, tons of tear gas were fired. Flooded rapidly were special tactical squads hidden inside the Complex, as well as masked police officers with waving batons. 

To fire first and then disperse was the deployment of police and the main direction used to clear the scene on 12 June. What's more, firing (such as rubber bullets and bean bag rounds) was aimed at heads, while tear gas canisters were hurled on bodies. 

Fire first and then disperse -- The followings were my observation near the LegCo public protest area from 3pm to 4pm: 
Protest at midday on 12 June was peaceful. Police had once said that there was no plan to "clear the scene for the time being". Some secondary school students in uniform, office ladies and white-collar workers from Central arrived at the scene to show support to the protest. There were church members lined up in front of the police officers singing hymns incessantly. No violence was foreseen. 

The calm ambience at 3pm in the public protest area became tense at near 4pm, when it was learnt that clashes started on Tim Mei Avenue. Police received news at 4pm that protesters were planning to occupy the LegCo. 

Protesters charged the Police cordon line. Without any warning and under the instruction from an inspector, the police fired bean bag rounds at protesters by an officer holding a Remington shotgun. During the clashes, there were protesters hurling a few pieces of bricks, around two to three. The inspector picked up the bricks and roared at the protesters, "Are you hurling bricks? Are you hurling bricks?" From what I saw at the scene, there were not many bricks. The shout of "Are you hurling bricks?" from police was more an order to their colleagues for the sake of recording rather than a warning to the protesters. Would it be an indication of "shoot once hurled"? 

Another angle at the public protest area: Police officers rushed out to strike protesters
Police fired the first tear gas when officers without gas masks were forced to back off to the corner. Then the riot squads lurked inside the Legco Building flocked in to disperse the crowd by batons. Former Commissioner of Police TSANG Wai-hung had once explained that the use of tear gas was for dispersing the crowd, but the operation this time was obviously to fire first and disperse afterwards. This is completely different from either the operation conducted during the Umbrella Movement in 2014 that "Disperse the crowd first" or the common ways used internationally. 

Back to 1989 Govt prevents treachery 
I believed that "This is an ORDER" to take a group photo of the police officers next to the patrol car before the operation. The photo could be sent within police WhatsApp groups for showing their loyalty, recognising their faces and implementing stringently the accountability system, in case "treacherous" officers refused to shoot at the scene. With the headshot taken, any uncooperative officers can be tried publicly within Police. I witnessed the first shot at the public protest area. 

The inspector made an order to the police officer, who was holding a gun and without a mask, next to his ear. Once the first shot was fired, other police officers would be relieved of a burden and become obedient soldiers who can forget the criminal responsibility of shooting at people's heads. That was why police officers were boasting that they would not allow a second umbrella movement as they have obviously been brain-washed. I believe that even Commissioner Stephen LO Wai-chung was well aware that once there were over 30,000 to 50,000 people around the LegCo, and the Police could only resort to weapons and tear gas for clearance. 

In 1989, Xu Qinxian, the army commander of the Beijing 38th Group Army, applied for leave. Sympathizing the citizens, the troops could not clear the scene when they entered the city. DENG Xiaoping worried the morale of the troops and therefore cut off their communications. Soldiers could only wait for instructions at the camps. In 2019, rumours saying that there are opposing voices to the "Fugitive Extradition Bill" at the senior level within the Government. The Government Headquarters was closed for two days. Police officers successively quit from friend WhatsApp groups and fired feverishly in the city. The police force is now out of control. Pro-Beijing camp went against the will of a million of people by keeping silent and trying their very best to attend the meeting. ExCo member Bernard Chan even implied the deployment of the People's Liberation Army, which was however ultimately denied by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Protesters were clad in white and then black, finally turned into red. Say hello to 1989. 


Ray Wong: War between the Free World and Totalitarianism

War between the Free World and Totalitarianism
(Speech by Ray Wong Toi-Yeung on 4/6/2019 in German Diet)
(Content originally from Hong Kong Indigenous; small editorial changes made by HKCT to conform spelling standards)

Thanks for having me today. It’s my honour to speak to you. My name is Ray Wong Toi-yeung. Alan Li and I are the first refugees from Hong Kong. We were granted refugee status last year.

I would like to thank Germany for welcoming us. I really appreciate Germany’s reverence for human rights and human dignity. Today, I would also like to thank the Green Party, Ms Bause and her colleagues for organizing this important event.

30 years ago, when the tanks rolled into Tian'anmen Square, the world watched in horror as blood ran on the streets! More horrible is that this murderous regime is still ruling the country! China’s economic success gave the world an illusion that as it prospered, it would eventually become a democratic country with respect for human rights.

Unfortunately, though 30 years have passed, the communist China regime has become more brutal than ever. This is one of the world’s most totalitarian states!

When Hong Kong was handed to China in 1997, we had no choice but to accept this murderer, as the negotiation was made by the UK and China! Under "One Country, Two Systems", Hong Kong was promised to have freedom, rule of law, autonomy and democracy. But China has broken all these promises!

In 2014, I was one of the protesters in a huge pro-democracy protest, the Umbrella Revolution. In order to disperse hundreds of thousands of Hong Kong citizens, the government ordered the use of tear gas against us and the police beat us with batons. Riot police were pointing guns in our face.
There were rumours that tanks from China were crossing the border. The vivid and bloody images of Chinese students rolled over by tanks and shot in Tiananmen square came to my mind!

I was thinking: Would this be our Hong Kong’s June 4?
Nonetheless, we were not afraid! That night I saw the strength of will of Hong Kongers who were willing to defend our city’s freedom and fight for democracy. And I saw hope.

It was this which motivated me to devote myself to Hong Kong’s politics.
I founded the Hong Kong Indigenous Party in January 2015 with a group of young people who shared the same hope as me. Our vision was to fight for freedom, build democracy and save Hong Kong’s language, culture and identity.

“Freedom is nothing but a chance to be better.”
- Albert Camus

More than a year of hard work later, we gained enough support in a by-election that we were very confident of a seat in the legislative council general election in 2016!
Unfortunately, the Beijing regime saw us as a potential threat which would undermine their great plan to turn Hong Kong into just another Chinese city.
My colleague Edward Leung was barred from running in the election due to his political views. So we transferred our support to another party, which successfully secured two seats. But these two lawmakers were later disqualified also. We lost our political rights!

Not content with this, Beijing and the Hong Kong government came after us with harsh prosecutions linked to another protest, the so-called Fishball revolution. Edward, Alan and I and 40 others were charged with rioting under the Public Order Ordinance, a law which was strongly criticized by the United Nations Human rights Council. The maximum sentence is 10 years in prison!

In June 2018, Edward was sentenced to jail for six years. About 30 other protesters, mostly students, have been put into prison for terms of 3 to 7 years.
I want to call for the immediate release of Edward Leung and all Hong Kong’s political prisoners!
There is a long list of human rights abuses in Hong Kong. Booksellers were kidnapped to China, democratically elected lawmakers were disqualified, protesters were sentenced to harsh prison terms! A Financial Times journalist was expelled from Hong Kong and human rights activists have been denied entry. Academic and press freedom is threatened.

Four leaders of the Umbrella revolution, including Professor Benny Tai and Professor Chan Kin-man are now in prison.

Is this the same Hong Kong as before 1997?

The free world has to wake up to the challenge from authoritarianism and defend Hong Kong’s freedom and dignity against communist China.

Recently, Beijing has opened a new front by ordering the Hong Kong government to pass an amendment to the Extradition law. This Law is effectively a legalization of kidnapping!

The law will give power to the Hong Kong government to arrest and extradite a Hong Kong citizen or foreign visitor to face trial in China. How dare the Hong Kong government agree to extradite their own citizens and visitors to a legal system where forced confessions are normal, and torture is common?

Human rights and the rule of law benefit Hong Kong as a trading hub. It is not only an international financial centre but also a platform for international NGOs to advocate freedom, human rights and democracy in Asia. Hong Kong is strategically important for NGOs in the whole region.

This extradition bill is breaking the firewall between Hong Kong and China. For me personally, I will never be able to go back to Hong Kong as the Hong Kong government could extradite me to China on the grounds of threatening national security.

Hong Kong is facing a critical time in its 178 years of History. On the 30th anniversary of the June 4 massacre, we hope everyone in the world who treasures freedom, democracy and human dignity will join us in solidarity.
Hong Kong needs your help!

This is not only a war fighting the Communist regime by Hong Kong people, this is a war between democracy and tyranny; as well as a war between the free world and totalitarianism.


30 年前,當坦克駛進天安門廣場的時候,全世界都惶恐地看著染血的北京街頭;但更可怕的是,這個殺人政權至今仍然統治著這國家。中國在經濟上的成就給了世界一種繁榮的錯覺,讓人以為這個地方有一天將成為一個尊重人權的民主國家。不幸地,30 年過去了,這裡只有變得比以前更殘暴,更成為世界上其中一個最專制的國家。

當香港於 1997 年交還予中國時,我們(香港人)並沒有選擇,只能接受這個殺人兇手,那時所有談判都是英國和中國之間的,香港人並不能參與。「一國兩制」的制度承諾賦予香港自由、法治、自主及民主,但這些承諾全都被中國打破了。

2014 年,香港爆發了一場爭取民主的雨傘革命,我是示威者之一。為驅散數以十萬計的市民,政府下令使用催淚彈對付我們、警察用警棍毆打我們、防暴警察將槍口指向我們的臉;傳聞中國大陸的坦克會衝過邊界,我的腦海重現天安門廣場上、學生被射殺和被坦克輾過的血腥畫面,我想,這會是「香港六四」嗎?



這份希望驅使我投入香港政治,我和一群和我抱持同樣希望的年輕人,於 2015 年 1 月創立了本土民主前線,我們的願景是爭取自由、建立民主,以及保衛香港獨有的文化,語言和身份。

「自由的唯一意義,就是一個變得更好的機會」。- 阿爾貝•卡繆



但北京和香港政府並不滿足於此。在另一場被稱為「魚蛋革命」的大型示威後,他們嚴厲檢控我們。梁天琦、李東昇和我,及另外 40 人,我們被控《公安條例》中的暴動罪,這條最高刑罰是監禁 10 年的條例曾遭到聯合國人權委員會的強烈批評。

2018 年 6 月,梁天琦被判入獄 6 年,其他示威人士,包括大部份學生,全部被判 3 至 7 年監禁。

香港還和 1997 年前一樣嗎?





香港正處於開埠178年來最嚴峻的時候。於六四大屠殺 30 週年這時,我希望世上每一個珍惜自由、民主以及人類尊嚴的人們,與我們團結一致。
這不僅是香港人對抗共產黨政權的戰爭, 更是一場民主對抗暴政、自由世界對抗極權的戰爭。


[4 June 2019] Owan Li: Giving Up Is Our Heaviest Price to Pay

Giving Up Is Our Heaviest Price to Pay
By Owan Li, Council Member (April 2018-April 2020) of the Hong Kong Polytechnic University [Social Policy and Administration, Year 3]
in front of Hong Kong Cultural Centre on 4 June 2019












[Li's speech in English; edited for grammatical reasons; explanations in italic]

Good evening everybody.

Learning from history is about learning the lesson of our life in our modern society. Today, we are coming to Tsim Sha Tsui, commemorating 30 years ago - it's not quite far away - in Beijing, Tian'anmen Square. We can clearly find that the government of the Communist Party in China already showed the dictatorship to the citizens. It's actually - today's event - not only have to recall the dead victims in China, we also learn the history, learn the lesson of today's Hong Kong. We should have the self-determination of our destiny, and also we should learn the lesson from history.

Today, in Hong Kong, the government already showed us the dominance, the hegemony - not only because of the sovereignty problem but also they do not treasure Hong Kong people. Today, in Hong Kong, the identity of Hong Kong people is extremely difficult. To uphold the identity of Hong Kong people, we should be proud of it. Because this identity is unique. No one can replace [us].

However, we can see that every day in Hong Kong, we have sad news. Teenagers, or our next generation, have no hope - they even committed suicide. They think that they cannot find their future. However, when we learn from history, we can find that the Communist Party in China already showed us - when we escape, they will do more. We are now living in danger. As a student leader in Hong Kong, and I am still the student council member of the Hong Kong Polytechnic University, although the punishment [received by Li regarding his protest against the Polytechnic's decision to forbid the students using the democracy wall at campus] is 120 hours of community service order, compared to that, 30 years ago, they sacrificed their lives, their destiny, their future. Compared to that, it [Li's punishment] seems to be nothing.

History is written by winners instead of losers. So, we have to uphold the identity of Hong Kong people. We have to be our own winner. We never forget, we never forgive.

Last but not least, in the future, it will be predicted that our lives, society, the community will encounter more difficulties. I would like to express that we never give up, because, in the world, we are Hong Kong people. Only we are Hong Kong people to uphold Hong Kong's rights. Thank you.


[4 June 2019] Joey Siu: Unite regardless of generation and protest on 9 June

Unite regardless of generation and protest on 9 June
By Joey Siu, Acting External Vice President of Provisional Executive Committee of the City University of Hong Kong Students' Union
in front of Hong Kong Cultural Centre on 4 June 2019









Hello everyone, I am Joey Siu, the Acting External Vice President of Provisional Executive Committee of the City University of Hong Kong Students' Union.

So, first I have to apologize for not having an English version of my speech. But what I want to say is, we all should remember the June 4th movement. We all should remember how cruel can the Chinese government be. No one can save us - only we Hongkongers can save ourselves. As a Hongkonger, as a student, as a student leader, I am willing to voice out for my country, for my homeland. So, 9 June, let's meet at Victoria Park, thank you.
(The following is the translation of her Cantonese speech.)
Hello everyone, I am Joey Siu, the Acting External Vice President of Provisional Executive Committee of the City University of Hong Kong Students' Union.

Three decades ago, in Beijing, lots of Chinese students had led the movement in 1989, demanding the CCP government to face squarely to the problems in society and to build a democratic China. Yet, the desire for democracy and freedom by tens of thousands of students was neglected by the government and ended up in a tragedic slaughter in the early hours on 4 June 1989. Cold tanks completely crushed students' hope for democracy, freedom and justice.

Three decades later, in Hong Kong, the CCP regime has time and again showed its fervent desire to destroy the core values of Hong Kong. From disqualifying Edward Leung's candidacy to disqualifying the seats of four elected lawmakers, from NPCSC's Basic Law interpretation to what is happening now - utterly tarnishing the rule of law in Hong Kong by trying to amend the Fugitive Offenders Ordinance (FOO). They want our homeland to become a city under the CCP regime.

In recent years, we can often hear criticisms from people of the older generation about youngsters not attending the candlelight vigil in Victoria Park. As a Hongkonger, I choose not to attend the one in Victoria Park by the Hong Kong Alliance in Support of Patriotic Democratic Movements in China. To build a democratic China is not a responsibility on the shoulders of Hongkongers, who are born and bred here. Putting aside identity issue - fantasizing a brutal regime to vindicate the mistake it made three decades ago and allow democracy and freedom is simply ridiculous.

Still, I choose to commemorate June 4th. As a student, I hope to alert myself the barbarism of the regime Hong Kong is now facing by remembering those sacrificed students in Beijing. As a student leader, I hope to tell more people - especially the younger generation who can no longer learn about the incident completely from textbooks - how brutal the CCP is.

Half of the deadline of "unchanged 50 years" has passed, yet the CCP has an urge to turn Hong Kong red. The rule of law, which Hongkongers are proud of, as well as freedom and democracy, can be described as "it's over". And now, the freedom of assembly - the most fundamental right - is in jeopardy.

The CCP wants to steamroller the draconian FOO amendment. I do not know whether we can commemorate June 4th at the same place next year. Ray Wong, now in exile in Germany, wrote on New York Times that if the FOO amendment is passed, Hong Kong will be dead. At this critical moment of Hong Kong, we should remember the lessons from history. Regardless of older or younger generation, we should put our differences aside and unite to oppose this draconian law.

Hongkongers, let's meet at Victoria Park on 9 June.