Hong Kong (AsiaNews) - A commando of armed men carried out two coordinated petrol bomb attacks overnight on the home of pro-democracy publisher Jimmy Lai Chee-ying and on the headquarters of Next Media, the publishing group founded by the Catholic tycoon.
The attack was carried out by masked men and caused no injuries or major damage to buildings: security cameras filmed the assailants, who, however, have not been identified by police. The cars used for the raid were found in flames, and police have classified the incident as "arson".
Next Media publish the newspaper Apple Daily, often critical of the Chinese power and strong supporter of the Occupy Central democratic movement. The peaceful demonstrations held by the group - which is seeking real freedom from the Chinese government - blocked the streets of Hong Kong for two and a half months between the end of September and mid-December.
In order to protect his political commitment and safeguard the company, Jimmy Lai - already at the center of a fierce press campaign orchestrated by the media close to Beijing - resigned from the post of president of Next Media at the end of the occupations of Occupy Central.
The day after his resignation he was arrested along with other leaders of the movement, including Cardinal Joseph Zen Ze-kiun: the arrests occurred simultaneously with the removal of barriers in the district of Admiralty, the heart of democracy protests.