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Hong Kong protests: 'Undercover' policeman beaten as rioters 'tie up reporter'

Mirror logo Mirror 8/13/2019 Amber Hicks
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An 'undercover' police officer has been attacked and a 'reporter' had his wrists bound together with cable ties by protesters as the riots in Hong Kong escalate and erupt into violence.

Shocking scenes are unfolding tonight from the country's airport with medics being prevented from helping those injured.

One man, who is believed to be a plain clothes police officer, has been "badly beaten up" and is in a "pretty bad way", according to Sky's Stuart Ramsay.

Some of the protesters have been captured beating the man and stamping on him.

Footage shows him being wrestled to the ground in a headlock before more people join the melee and throw punches.

Others gather to take photos and film the horrifying attack.

Sky's Stuart Ramsay said there would be "massive backlash" if the suspected police officer dies.

"You have lost all moral high ground when you do this type of thing," he told the news channel.

"It looks terrible to the outside world and it looks terrible to the people of Hong Kong."

Paramedics were prevented from evacuating the man for hours, it has been claimed, while shouts of "you’ll bear the consequences for your own actions” were reportedly heard.

A person was later seen being put on a stretcher by medics.

Hong Kong Police force confirmed a person had been assaulted and needed urgent medical attention.

They tweeted: "A visitor was assaulted and is currently being besieged by a large group of protesters at the Hong Kong International Airport.

a group of people in uniform: One person - understood to be a reporter - had his wrists tied together © Sky News One person - understood to be a reporter - had his wrists tied together

"He requires immediate medical attention but the protesters concerned have been obstructing ambulance officers from rendering medical assistance.

"As per a request for assistance from the Airport Authority, the Police appeal to the protesters to stop their obstruction so that the visitor can receive timely medical attention.

"The Police stress that this is not a dispersal operation and aim to escort the visitor safety to a hospital."

Another video has also surfaced of a lone police officer in riot gear being beaten with his own baton while being cornered against a wall.

The footage begins by showing the officer storm into the airport and push a man to the ground. But he is then surrounded by protesters who grab his baton from his clutches and use it to deliver blows to his torso.

a group of people standing in front of a crowd posing for the camera: Anti-government protesters block the access to the departure gates, during a demonstration at Hong Kong Airport © REUTERS Anti-government protesters block the access to the departure gates, during a demonstration at Hong Kong Airport

He then appears to pull out another weapon which sends the attackers fleeing before he drops to the ground and is joined by his colleagues.

Similar scenes show a man having his wrists bound together by cable ties.

He is understood to have been conscious as he was carried away on a stretcher.

An employee of Chinese tabloid newspaper Global Times shared a video of the incident and tweeted: "Fu Guohao, reporter of GT website is being seized by demonstrators at HK airport.

"I affirm this man being tied in this video is the reporter himself. He has no other task except for reporting. I sincerely ask the demonstrators to release him. I also ask for help of West reporters."

a man standing in front of a crowd: Riot police use pepper spray to disperse anti-extradition bill protesters © REUTERS Riot police use pepper spray to disperse anti-extradition bill protesters

A "I love HK Police" t-shirt was allegedly found inside his bag, reports Bloomberg.

Hong Kong has been plunged into a state of "panic and chaos," its leader warned earlier after mass unrest has rocked the city for 10 weeks.

In her first public appearance since demonstrators succeeded in shutting down the city's international airport yesterday, Chief Executive Carrie Lam said it could take a "long time for Hong Kong to recover.

She has defied calls to quit as the stock market tumbled, airlines flagged amid further flight disruptions and anti-government protesters filled the airport for a fifth consecutive day.

Demonstrators chanting “Fight for freedom - saving Hong Kong" occupied Hong Kong Airport today forcing the Hong Kong Airport Authority to cancel all remaining flights from about 5pm local time (10am BST).

a group of people standing in front of a crowd: The man is lost among the protesters © Sky News The man is lost among the protesters

It is the second day the authority has been forced to cancel all flights and the fifth consecutive day of protests at the airport.

Protesters were seen wearing eye patches in reference to a woman who was shot in the eye with a beanbag round during a clash with police.

The protests began as opposition to a now-suspended bill that would have allowed extradition to mainland China for those facing criminal charges.

They have evolved into a more demanding pro-democracy movement, fuelled by fear that the freedoms Hong Kong enjoys as a special administrative region of China are being eroded.

Amnesty International said: "The people of Hong Kong have bravely resisted the proposed bill that could expose them to abuse from China, even in the face of a violent crackdown.

"The proposed changes of the extradition bill if enacted, would essentially allow the handover of persons in the territory of Hong Kong to mainland China.

a group of people standing around a motorcycle: Riot police seen during a mass demonstration © REUTERS Riot police seen during a mass demonstration

"It would extend the power of the mainland authorities to target critics, human rights defenders, journalists, NGO workers and anyone else in Hong Kong.

"Mainland China’s justice system has a record of torture, serious violations of fair trial rights, enforced disappearances and various systems of incommunicado detention without trial.  

"Over a period of two weeks starting on the 9 June, over a million people came out in protest. The government refused to withdraw the bill, and their response was to crack down on protests with excessive police violence.

"Police used tear gas and pepper spray, and in some instances, guns firing bean bags and rubber bullets in a largely peaceful protest on 12 June. The government reported that there were 81 casualties related to the protest activities - our research has shown that police violence violated international human rights law and standards."

In response to the unrest, Chief Executive Lam issued a statement from the government headquarters complex, fortified with 6-foot high, water-filled barricades.

She said: "Take a minute to look at our city, our home.

"Can we bear to push it into the abyss and see it smashed to pieces?

Demonstrators say they are fighting the erosion of the "one country, two systems" arrangement enshrining some autonomy for Hong Kong when China took it back from Britain in 1997.

U.S. President Donald Trump said the situation in Hong Kong was tricky, but he hoped it would work out for everybody, including China, and "for liberty" without anyone getting hurt or killed.

"The Hong Kong thing is a very tough situation - very tough," Trump told reporters during a visit to Morristown, New Jersey.

"We'll see what happens," he added.

"It's a very tricky situation. I think it will work out and I hope it works out, for liberty. I hope it works out for everybody, including China. I hope it works out peacefully. I hope nobody gets hurt. I hope nobody gets killed."

He later tweeted: "Many are blaming me, and the United States, for the problems going on in Hong Kong. I can’t imagine why?

"Our Intelligence has informed us that the Chinese Government is moving troops to the Border with Hong Kong. Everyone should be calm and safe!"

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