Several well-known Hong Kong democracy activists have made serious allegations against the police and government in the Chinese Special Administrative Region. On the sidelines of her visit to Washington DC, Joshua Wong said on Saturday that Hong Kong had "transformed itself from a modern global city into a police state with police brutality." The pop singer Denise Ho spoke of a "police state".
The government hides behind the police and refuses to find a solution to the crisis, Ho said. Activist Brian Leung accused Hong Kong prime minister Carrie Lam of using the police for her personal power. The government is abusing its "public power to torture and silence people," Leung said.
Shortly before, the Amnesty International human rights group published the findings of an investigation that said that the Hong Kong police are abusing and torturing detained activists. Wong and many of his comrades have been in custody several times.
On Saturday, protesters in Hong Kong clashed again with demonstrators and the police. The demonstration in Tuen Mun near the border with mainland China had begun peacefully at first. In front of a government building, a small group of demonstrators ripped down a Chinese flag and burned it. Tensions increased rapidly after a police task force stormed a park where many protesters were gathering. There were a number of arrests.
1,500 arrests since the beginning of the protests
Wong claims to be one of approximately 200 activists to be tried in connection with the protests. Since the protests began more than three months ago, around 1,500 people have been arrested, including a 12-year-old child, according to Wong.
The protests in Hong Kong, which have been going on for more than three months, initially contravened a planned law that included renditions of suspects to mainland China. Under pressure from the demonstrators, the Hong Kong government completely withdrew the law.
In the meantime, the protests are generally directed against the Beijing-loyal leadership and the increasing restriction of civil rights. The protesters demand, among other things, the resignation of Prime Minister Lam, an independent investigation of police violence and free elections.