Hong Kong leader urges peaceful resolution of univ. standoff
Iran Press TV
Tuesday, 19 November 2019 10:41 AM
Hong Kong's Chief Executive Carrie Lam has hoped for a peaceful resolution of a standoff between police and protesters at a major university in the city, urging the "full cooperation" of the demonstrators.
Protesters have occupied the Hong Kong Polytechnic University since last week. Using it as a base, they have attempted to disrupt nearby traffic and have been making makeshift weapons such as Molotov cocktails. They have also been using bows and arrows to target security forces around the site.
Police have moved in and surrounded the premises to contain the acts of disruption.
Speaking at a regular news conference on Tuesday, Lam said 600 protesters had left the campus, including 200 minors but that about 100 people remained in the university.
Lam said she had told police to handle the standoff humanely "to have a peaceful resolution, as far as possible," stressing that such a solution "could only be achieved with the full cooperation of the protesters."
She also said she had been shocked that campuses had been turned into "weapons factories," describing protesters as now being the enemy of the people.
Lam warned that police "are on the reactive side" and would have to take "necessary action" to prevent any tragedies from happening in the city.
Lam's remarks came shortly after Hong Kong's new chief of police urged support by all citizens to end over the five months of unrest in the city.
Hong Kong has been engulfed by mass protests since June. The public display of anger initially came in opposition to a controversial extradition bill. The proposal was shelved, but the protests have continued and taken on an increasingly violent form, with masked individuals vandalizing public and private property and attacking security forces and government buildings.
The anti-government demonstrators now want complete separation from mainland China.
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