Police ban march by Civil Human Rights Front because of possible bombs
by Paul Wang

The march, on Sunday, was to challenge the anti-mask law and abuse of power by police. It will likely take place anyway. In recent weeks, the Front has organised rallies that drew millions of people. Flashmobs have occurred at lunchtime today.

Hong Kong (AsiaNews) – Hong Kong police have banned a march on Sunday, organised by the Civil Human Rights Front, citing possible bombs and violence.

The Front planned a march from Salisbury Garden in Tsim Sha Tsui to the West Kowloon high-speed train terminus where trains travel to China in order to challenge the emergency law that bans wearing masks in public.

“The anti-mask law deprives freedom of expression among Hong Kong citizens, and threatens everyone’s personal safety while exercising their rights to freedom of assembly,” the Front said adding that the march is meant to get the government to hold an independent inquiry into police brutality and abuse of power.

The police justified its ban by citing violent incidents that followed recent protests, such as roadblocks, fires and even home-made explosive devices, like the one found near a police lorry in Mong Kok last Sunday.

The Front, which represents about 50 pro-democracy groups, is behind most of the protests of recent months, some of which drew crowds of a million and 2.3 million people.

The rallies were peaceful. However, more recently, in the face of growing police violence, groups of radical protesters have carried out acts of vandalism, violence and destruction.

Althougj police banned protests, tens of thousands of people took to the streets anyway, defying the ban. Today for example, at lunchtime, flashmobs and unauthorised improvised marches were held in various districts of the territory (pictures).

The police ban comes two days after Jimmy Sham Tsz-kit, one of the leaders of the Civil Human Rights Front, was attacked and beaten by a group of masked people with hammers and spanners.