Police brutality video in Hong Kong sparks outrage

  • Sutirtho Patranobis, Hindustan Times, Beijing
  • Updated: Oct 15, 2014 23:21 IST

The video of a pro-democracy protester getting assaulted in Hong Kong sparked online outrage on Wednesday as the city police detained at least 45 people for taking part in the agitation that seemed to have revived after showing signs of withering in its third week.

Police personnel used pepper spray on the protesters as some of them got involved in a scuffle with the personnel

Among those detained were 37 men and eight women. They were charged with illegal assembly and obstructing the police, state media reports said, adding that there were “violent clashes with the protesters”.

The scuffle broke out after the police personnel stormed the roads near the Hong Kong government’s office

But what outraged people was a video — released by Hong Kong TV network, TVB — that showed a handcuffed protester getting assaulted for several minutes by at least police personnel in plainclothes.

“The footage sparked outrage and calls for prosecution from activists and lawmakers. Hong Kong’s security chief said Wednesday that the accused officers had been ‘removed’ from their posts,” an AFP report said.

“There were chaotic scenes during the clear-out operation on early Wednesday morning as officers scuffled with demonstrators, wrestled some to the ground and forced others off the road,” the Xinhua report said.

The Mainland’s hardening stand on the protests was again reflected today in an editorial in People’s Daily, the Communist Party of China’s mouthpiece, which said: “Stability is bliss, and turmoil brings havoc,” it adds.

Meanwhile, the British broadcaster BBC’s website was blocked in China on Wednesday apparently because of its coverage of the ongoing protests.

It appears to be the first time the BBC’s website was completely blocked in China since December 2010, when it was inaccessible for days ahead of the Nobel Peace Prize award ceremony for Chinese dissident Liu Xiaobo, according to AFP.

The move came hours before China warned the UK not to interfere in Hong Kong’s affairs as the city was China’s integral part. “We have repeatedly stated that Hong Kong’s affairs fall within China’s internal affairs,” foreign ministry spokesperson Hong Lei said at a regular press briefing. Hong’s remarks were in response to a written statement to the British parliament on recent events in Hong Kong.

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