Hong Kong University Siege Ends Peacefully As Street Protests Continue

Andrew Cummings
November 30, 2019

An official statement indicated that during the search carried out since yesterday, officers found gasoline bombs, explosives, bottles containing corrosive liquids and other weapons in the areas of the academic institution.

An SOS message from a student inside Hong Kong's Polytechnic University, saying many of those trapped had written their own death notes after their campus was besieged by police.

Ken Woo, acting president of the Poly U student union, said the siege had changed students' perceptions of their university.

During an official visit to Thailand, Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam (林鄭月娥) said that Hong Kong is undergoing a hard period, but that the fundamentals of the territory, including its strengths under the "one country, two systems" framework, remain strong.

The United States government has shown strong support for Hong Kong protesters.

Police public relations chief Superintendent Kwok Ka-chuen said he hoped the peaceful end to the standoff would be a "turning point" in the protest movement. The Human Rights Act did expand the president's sanctions powers somewhat, but it is largely symbolic.

Protesters wear a mask featuring the face of former UK Consulate employee Simon Cheung during a petition protest outside the British Consulate General in Hong Kong on November 29, 2019 in Hong Kong, China. "Revolution in our time!" and "No rioters, just a violent regime!"

Last week, an global medical journal hit out in an opinion article at the detention of doctors, paramedics, and first-aid personnel by riot police during the Poly U siege. It has continued over other issues, including calls for expanded elections and an investigation into the police's use of force.

The government is also facing growing calls to limit the use of tear gas, a chemical weapon under worldwide military classification, in densely populated city streets, where families are often left choking even in their own homes, or while eating in restaurants.

The Act also provides terms to terminate sanctions where individuals credibly demonstrate a "significant change in behavior, [have] paid an appropriate effect for the activity for which sanctions were imposed, and [have] credibly committed to not engage in an activity" that undermines fundamental freedoms and autonomy of Hong Kong in the future. Sure. But they also know it wasn't only a joke.

"The government must meet the five demands as soon as possible or street protests will continue", he told reporters. The region has been torn apart by six months of unrest following pro-democracy demonstrations and parades that were focused on eliminating an extradition bill that would have, if passed, enabled criminal suspects in Hong Kong be sent to and dealt with in China.

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