Published: Sat, August 10, 2019
Entertaiment | By Paul Elliott

Hong Kong protesters stage airport sit-in for worldwide support

Hong Kong protesters stage airport sit-in for worldwide support

At the University of Queensland in Brisbane, a handful of hard-hatted students held its latest demonstration on Friday in support of friends and family back home.

They dispersed, as noxious smoke also filled the underground station there, bringing train passengers to tears.

"Dear travelers", some of the flyers read in English, "Please forgive us for the "unexpected" Hong Kong". In 2016, a protest against the government for cracking down on unlicensed street vendors grew out of hand when participants started throwing fishballs at police, then escalated to bricks, bottles, and a cart full of boiling oil.

Luxury shops were caught up in the protests, with some shoppers even taking pictures of riot police, while other bystanders - at one stage hundreds - jeered the officers.

China has also accused foreign powers of fuelling the unrest. "We'll continue to fight.but we're also going to be smart and wear them down".

Protesters want the resignation of the territory's leader, Chief Executive Carrie Lam, and an investigation into complaints of abuses by police. -China trade war - was being undermined by the protests, which began in June. Following a pattern established in past weekends, the demonstrations continued into the night despite police refusal to grant permission for the public gatherings.

"Most of us middle-aged people understand that the younger generation feels helpless".

China's aviation regulator on Friday ordered Hong Kong carrier Cathay Pacific to turn over information on staff working on mainland-bound flights, warning that all personnel involved with or supporting "illegal protests" would be banned from flying to the mainland or through Chinese airspace.

Weeks later, it released a three-minute video which showed its soldiers engaged in various military activities, including firing rockets and guns at targets and practicing riot drills with a group of mock protesters dressed similar to protesters in current demonstrations.

It did not deter thousands of demonstrators.

"New Zealanders in Hong Kong are advised to avoid all protests and demonstrations, as even those meant to be peaceful have the potential to turn violent with little or no warning". She said she was anxious about escalating violence, but added that "the protesters were just trying to protect themselves against police violence".

But facing boycott calls, the firm's mainland China office subsequently issued a statement emphasising that it operated separately from the Hong Kong division and that it upheld the "one country, two systems" principle.

To help deal with the protests, Hong Kong has recalled from retirement a police commander who oversaw the response to pro-democracy demonstrations in 2014.

On Thursday, the Chinese foreign ministry's office in Hong Kong issued a formal protest over a reported meeting between United States consular officials in the city and opposition figures, including prominent activist Joshua Wong.

An anti-extradition bill protester holds up a placard for arriving travellers during a protest at the arrival hall of Hong Kong International Airport in Hong Kong, China August 9, 2019.

Hong Kong police refused to give permission for four anti-government marches to be staged place over the weekend, though it seems unlikely that will keep protesters quiet. Both marches and the airport protests were peaceful. "Today's march provides a good opportunity for us to bring our children to voice our demands and I hope more peaceful protesters will come out too".

CCTV, the state-run broadcaster, called the USA diplomat "the behind-the-scenes black hand creating chaos in Hong Kong", according to the New York Times, employing the term used against those who led the anti-government protests leading up to the Tiananmen massacre in 1989. The legislation's critics said it would threaten Hong Kong's coveted judicial independence and expose residents to the political trials that are common in the mainland.

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