Violence Increases In Hong Kong Airport As Police Attack Pro-Democracy Protestors
Meanwhile, visitors complain of the rising costs from canceled flights.
Pro-democracy protests filled the Hong Kong airport for yet another day, forcing the cancellation of many departing flights on Tuesday. The massive protest led to large scale conflict between the protestors and riot police.
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Protestors have been demanding greater democratic freedoms and protection from mainland China for the past 10 weeks, according to BuzzFeed, but have been occupying the airport since Friday.
It was also reported while the protest began as peaceful, violent clashes between protesters and the police have become regular — instigated with police deploying tear gas inside metro stations and them being accused of firing beanbag rounds at protesters at close range.
Police officer had his baton taken from him and was attacked with it. Drew his pistol and aimed at protesters. Astonished nobody killed here tonight. pic.twitter.com/Wox8yziDnz— Mike Bird (@Birdyword) August 13, 2019
“Take a minute to look at our city, our home,” said the territory’s Chief Executive Carrie Lam. Lam's voice cracked during a news conference in the government headquarters complex. “Can we bear to push it into the abyss and see it smashed to pieces?”
Arrest outside airport pic.twitter.com/A4EnhmWrsw— Rosalind Adams (@RosalindZAdams) August 13, 2019
Though the protests serve a larger purpose for those involved, the canceled flights are costing many visitors to Hong Kong — like Grace Bendal, a 43-year-old contractor from the Philippines. USA Today reported Bendal's second flight canceled Tuesday as a result of the protests. The multiple cancellations const Bendal 3000 Hong Kong dollars as she awaits an opportunity to get home, according to the paper.
"I cannot blame them because they are fighting for something," Bendal said of the protesters, "but then it's not right if we are the ones suffering. So I hope they give us a chance to go home."
The protests have received different coverage inside of China as opposed to the rest of the world. In an op-ed for The Independent, Qing Cao wrote on the different focus between Chinese media and the western world.
"In the West, the media has reported this as a struggle for basic rights and freedoms," Cao wrote. "In China, coverage has been limited as the protests are perceived to be negative. But in what restricted reporting that there has been, the perspective is very different from the West, and reflects deep-seated Chinese views about colonial interference in Hong Kong."
Lam has stated that dialogue will only begin with the protestors once violence between the sides has stopped.