Hong Kong is bracing for another long weekend of protests following dramatic scenes earlier this week when demonstrators forced the closure of the financial hub’s international airport.
The protests started in early June against a bill easing extraditions to the mainland, and have since morphed into a broader stand against China’s rule over the special administrative region.
They show no signs of abating: China continues to back leader Carrie Lam and protesters are still sticking to their demands, which include her resignation.
The main protest tomorrow will be a test of the movement’s ability to sustain itself, particularly after protesters detained and beat two mainland citizens at the airport — a move that risked hurting their support among the broader public.
The Royal Thai Consulate in Hong Kong has asked Thais travelling to Hong Kong to register for updates on their website (www.consular.go.th/main/th/register or www.thai-consulate.org.hk) or call directly on (+852)6821-1545 or (+66)2-572-8442.
Yesterday, college students held a rally in Hong Kong’s centrally located Chater Garden, the site of previous peaceful gatherings by civil servants and finance professionals, that stretched into the night.
Local teachers plan to hold a morning march today from Chater Garden to Government House, Ms Lam’s official residence. Separate protests in the Hung Hom and To Kwa Wan neighbourhoods of Kowloon are also planned even though police denied permission.
Tomorrow will mark the return of mass protests organised by the Civil Human Rights Front, which called previous historic marches that brought hundreds of thousands of people onto the street. They will gather in Victoria Park, near the city’s financial core.
As people protest in Hong Kong, they will be joined by demonstrations of support across the world, from San Francisco’s Embarcadero Plaza to London’s Trafalgar Square and cities throughout Canada, Australia, Germany and Taiwan.