Thursday, 20 February, 2020


Too early to say if face-mask ban has proved ineffective: Lam

Riot police combing alleys to search for protesters in Mong Kok Hong Kong on Oct 6 2019 Too early to say if face-mask ban has proved ineffective: Lam
Bennie Garza | 09 October, 2019, 07:14

And when asked for her thoughts on comments made by Hong Kong's last governor Chris Patten that the face mask ban was "madness", Lam said: "You can not make a spiteful comment on Hong Kong, or support the violent protesters, claiming that their way is peaceful and it's their freedom".

Lam on Friday evoked emergency powers to ban protesters from wearing masks in a hardening of the government's stance on the territory's most disruptive crisis since it reverted to Chinese rule in 1997.

"I still strongly feel that we should find the solutions ourselves", Lam said.

"But please allow me to reiterate that if we are so proud of Hong Kong being a city that upholds and safeguards the rule of law, one important component of the rule of law is the law-abiding population", Lam said.

A little crowd gathered Monday outside the Eastern Magistrates' courthouse in which two protesters - an 18-year-old man and also a 38-year-old girl - arrested Saturday on charges such as breaking up the mask ban seemed.

"She would have to be insane to be making these decisions on her own without being pressured into them", said Mr Patten, who handed Hong Kong back to China in 1997.

"I can not tell you categorically now under what circumstances we will do extra things, including. calling on the central government to help", she said. Some demonstrators gathered temporarily outside a People's Liberation Army barracks were issued a warning against guys indoors for the first time, based on media reports.

Lam said there are no plans to use emergency powers to introduce other laws, following the ban on face masks.

On Sunday, a day after the anti-mask law came into effect, tens of thousands of people mostly wearing masks took to the streets in various districts across the city to protest against the legislation. Sixteen people have been charged with violating the anti-mask law, according to the government and public broadcaster RTHK.

'We have never taken a political position and therefore review designs to ensure they are in line with our company's long-held values of respect and tolerance, as well as with our clearly communicated guidelines for this competition, ' Vans said in a Facebook statement on Saturday.

Riot police officers enter inside a residential building during a demonstration in the Tseung Kwan O residential area in Kowloon, Hong Kong on Monday.

Two people were shot after assaulting police, one journalist was burned by petrol bombs hurled by protesters, hundreds of police officers suffered injuries, and innocent citizens were beaten up by rioters for disagreeing with their so-called "pro-democracy" views.

China's embassy in France has slammed the country's reaction to protests in Hong Kong, calling it hypocritical and arguing France should show empathy as China did when Paris was trying to cope with Yellow Vests. Scores of shops were closed and many bank cash machines were vandalised. The system was only partially open during the weekend, with protesters again setting stations ablaze and destroying ticketing machines and signs.

Lam has said she will seek the legislature's backing for the mask ban when it meets next on October 16.

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