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Police chief deplores recurring violence

By Joseph Li | | Updated: 2020-03-16 11:11
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Police Commissioner Chris Tang Ping-keung deplores recurring violence in Hong Kong while the city is also under siege from the novel coronavirus pneumonia. Right now, everyone should be united and fighting the pandemic together, yet some people have exploited the situation to attack the government and police, he said.

Reviewing the 2019 crime figures, he said he is sorry to see young people and students increasingly involved and arrested in illegal protests.

Tang told China Daily in an exclusive interview: "I am very sad because a year ago, most Hong Kong residents were still law-abiding, even though they were attending public activities involving hundred of thousands of people. But over the past nine months, many rioters, especially young people, have blocked roads, sabotaged public facilities, set fires, thrown gasoline bombs, and and vandalized shops.

"The defiance of the rule of law is spreading. When Hong Kong was attacked by SARS 17 years ago, all residents were united together to fight the disease. I deeply regret that today, some people, instead of fighting the virus, manipulate some issues to attack the government and police with fake news and rumors, mislead the people, and cause anti-police sentiments."

At the height of the COVID-19 problem over the past two months, when more residents were confirmed infected with the disease, the government was seeking sites to quarantine the patients and the Hong Kong residents to be evacuated from Hubei province and the Diamond Princess cruise ship docked in Japan.

Unfortunately, black-clad protesters obstructed the establishment of quarantine centers and designated pneumonia clinics, using the same kind of violence seen several months ago — blocking roads, setting fires and attacking some clinics. A newly completed public housing estate that was initially earmarked as a quarantine center was sabotaged.

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