16th November 2020 – (Hong Kong) Chris Tang, The Chief Commissioner of Police attended the Central and Western District Council meeting at Harbour Building in Sheung Wan at around 2pm today. He expressed during the meeting that since June 2019 till now, police have arrested a total of 7,019 protesters. 1,090 were charged while 574 were charged for participating in riots. 38 have been found guilty. Police also seized over 10,000 petrol bombs during the period.
The purpose of the meeting was also aimed to enhance mutual communication with district representatives and key stakeholders and their understanding of the Hong Kong Police Force. The Commissioner also made clarifications on fake news and false allegations, clearing up public misunderstanding on police enforcement actions.
Chris Tang said that a large number of violence and illegal acts occurred in Hong Kong in the second half of last year, which caused the number of crimes to rise from a record low in the first half of the year to a new high. Among them, the first 11 months of criminal damage last year increased by 2,100. There were more than 500 arson cases. He pointed out that these types of violent crimes were directly caused by anti-extradition protests. Chris also pointed out that out of 7,019 arrested persons, 2,847 were students, accounting for 40% of the total. The number of arrested students has increased significantly since schools reopened, from 25% before September last year to 43% recently. Street rallies and violent clashes that have continued since June last year have damaged a large number of public facilities.
He pointed out that since 7 months ago, a total of 85 MTR stations and 68 light rail stations have been severely damaged. During the period, some rioters even hurled petrol bombs at the moving trains. He criticized protesters for inflicting violence on others who did not share the same political stand with them. Also, 558 police officers were injured, some of whom were injured by sharp objects in the neck, arrows in the calf, burns, and bitten fingers. Their actions were akin to underground thugs.
Community Policing has been one of the top priorities of the police. In the future, they will continue to work hand-in-hand with District Council and District Fight Crime Committees, for combatting local crimes, and bringing the society back on track.