Innocent passersby were beaten or treated rudely by police officers who were trying to stop protesters from retaking the streets in Mong Kok.
In order to prevent protesters from returning to the intersection on Argyle Street, police on Thursday night closed all pedestrian lanes and used “violent force” to disperse people who were just passing by, Digital Broadcasting Radio said in its Facebook account. [Go to video]
An officer attacked a pedestrian with his baton even if the man was following police instructions to leave without showing any sign of defiance or assault, the report said.
Osman Cheng, who claimed to be the victim, said on Facebook that he was walking calmly close to the wall of the sidewalk when police suddenly attacked him with batons and kicked him.
Cheng said there was no need for the officers to use batons, adding that it would be better for authorities to declare a curfew if they didn’t want anyone to shop or walk on the streets.
Meanwhile, a large number of police officers pushed people, telling them to move forward, and used batons against them. Many of the pedestrians said they were injured in the waist or shoulder.
Police ignored pleas for restraint and continued pushing the people, ordering them to “move”, the report said.
A man surnamed Lau, who noted that he was just standing on the sidewalk to see what was happening, said police officers pushed him to the ground, kicked him a dozen times and tied him up. [Go to SocREC]
Over the past few days, police have been accused of using excessive force against ordinary people in their clearance operations, using pepper spray, tear gas and batons.
But Larry Kwok, chairman of the Independent Police Complaints Council, said “we won’t rush to draw a conclusion”, adding most of the complaints of police brutality were coming from media reports.
He said the council was trying to get a full picture of the incidents.
At least 13 complaints have been lodged against the police in relation to the Mong Kok clearance operations over the past two days.
The complaints, received by the Complaints Against Police Office, came from 17 people and included various allegations including assault, abusive language, misconduct and neglect of duty.
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