Retreat, save your strength, and come back another day.
That’s the advice of media tycoon and pan-democratic camp supporter Jimmy Lai Chee-ying to the students who have been occupying the streets for almost two months now.
Lai, who is regularly seen at the protest site in Admiralty, told The Age in an interview that the protesters are now tired after more than 50 days of street occupation.
The right thing for them to do is to retreat while the momentum of the movement is still there, and save their strength for the future, Apple Daily quoted Lai as saying.
If after their retreat, the government continues to ignore their demand for genuine universal suffrage, they will definitely be back on the streets, he said.
Having said that, Lai vowed to stay with other protesters if they decide to pursue the Occupy campaign.
He warned the police against using force to clear the streets, saying that such an action will only anger the people and the protesters will surely come back, even though they might opt for other protest sites.
Commenting on the failed attempt by student leaders last Saturday to fly to Beijing to seek talks with central government officials, Lai said they chose the wrong time for such a move.
They should have made the trip during the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation summit on Nov. 10 and 11 when many national leaders were present.
He said he did not propose the idea to the students as he did not think they would listen.
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