The Hong Kong Police Force has procured 4,000 rounds of inert grenades just as the threat of Occupy Central’s civil disobedience looms.
The weapons are supplied by British company Chemring Defence and cost 238,840 pounds (US$396,235), according to the latest government gazette.
The hand-thrown rubber bursting CS (2-chlorobenzaldene malononitrile, a chemical agent) grenades belong to the “less lethal” category and are “a more advanced means of creating a cloud of CS smoke”, the Chemring Defence website says.
The rubber bag will burst when it is activated and a series of burning CS sub-munitions will be dispersed over a wide area. These sub-munitions are “small but highly effective and defeat any attempt to return the payload to the law enforcement officer”.
The police said that the weapons are for internal security training of the Police Tactical Unit. The procurement is a normal supplementary exercise and the date of shipment will be the end of this year, Ming Pao Daily reported.
Information shows that the police have purchased at least 17,000 rounds of these inert grenades since 2008, the report said.
After the National People’s Congress Standing Committee issued its framework for the 2017 chief executive election, Occupy Central organizer Benny Tai said the time for dialogue has ended and the movement will kick off its civil disobedience actions.
It will join hands with academic groups, political parties and civil groups to hold demonstrations and will begin to occupy Central in due course, Tai said.
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