Rule of law in action

Updated: 2014-11-26 07:41

By Staff Writer(HK Edition)

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Rule of law in action

The Hong Kong Police Force took much needed action on Tuesday to help clear roadblocks in Mong Kok in accordance with a court order. Around 80 protesters were arrested on suspicion of contempt of court, after they refused to leave the area despite being warned by bailiffs. At a time when the rule of law faces a serious threat from illegal "Occupy Central" protesters, resolute police action is not only warranted - it is imperative.

By trying to stop the enforcement of court injunctions to remove the barricades, radical protesters are blatantly defying the law. They are also acting against the wishes of most Hong Kong people.

The arrests demonstrate police resolve to act in accordance with the law and ensure the authority of the judiciary is respected.

Such action has never been more important. In Hong Kong the rule of law has recently been compromised. This occurred when "Occupy" initiator Benny Tai and opposition lawmaker Albert Ho - both legal experts - deliberately tailored the notion of the rule of law to justify their illegal campaign.

Tuesday's police action demonstrated the rule of law in action. It was a timely reassurance that the rule of law, a cornerstone of Hong Kong stability and prosperity, will prevail.

The illegal "Occupy" campaign is the most serious challenge to the rule of law in the city since the handover. The protesters' refusal to comply with court orders is further proof that "true universal suffrage" is merely an excuse for organizers to divide Hong Kong society and sabotage its economy. This ultimately aims to undermine China's sovereign rule over the special administrative region.

They know most Hong Kong residents now strongly oppose their illegal movement. However, they have refused to heed public calls to end the protests. It shows their lack of respect for the spirit of democracy and the rule of law.

Earlier on Tuesday, Chief Secretary Carrie Lam urged students participating in "Occupy" to disassociate themselves with radical groups seeking an escalation in the campaign. Her call reflects growing concerns after radicals violently attacked the Legislative Council Complex on Tuesday night and early Wednesday last week.

It is time "Occupy" participants decided whether they want to continue their involvement with the campaign - and risk being seen as radicals hurting Hong Kong - or to abandon the illegal movement.

(HK Edition 11/26/2014 page10)