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HK protesters stage sit-in at shooting victim's school

October 2, 2019

Hong Kong demonstrators staged a sit-in at the school of an 18-year-old who was shot by police during a protest. It followed some of the most intense clashes in four months, and coincided with China's national day.

Students stage a sit-in at the school of Tsang Chi-kin
Image: AFP/M. Rasfan

Hundreds of demonstrators have staged a sit-in at the school of the 18-year-old student who was shot in the chest by Hong Kong police on Tuesday. There were fresh calls for further protests on Wednesday.

Students chanted "no rioters, only tyranny," in addition to slogans and protest songs. They also held pictures of the incident, taken from videos posted on social media which went viral.

Female students place their hands on their chests to protest the shooting of their fellow student
The shooting marks a significant escalation in the violence of pro-democracy protestsImage: AFP/M. Rasfan

Spontaneous flash-mob rallies also broke out Wednesday, as several thousand protesters, including many office workers, marched through Hong Kong's commercial district in an unsanctioned rally. 

The shooting of the man in the chest at close range  in the Tsuen Wan district of the city marked the first time that a demonstrator had been struck with live rounds throughout the nearly four months of protests.

Hong Kong police have since defended the decision, saying that the officer in question's choice to use live rounds was "reasonable and lawful" as the policeman had feared for his life. "In this very short span of time, he made a decision and shot the assailant," police chief Stephen Lo said.

Hong Kong students protest the shooting of Tsang Chi-kin
The 18-year-old who was shot in the chest at close range by police in Hong Kong is said to now be in a stable conditionImage: AFP/M. Rasfan

Police Senior Superintendent Yolanda Yu said it was "really very heartbreaking" that the protester was hurt.

The man who was shot is now said to be in a stable condition.

In response to the shooting, pro-democracy activist Joshua Wong criticized Lo, calling his support of the officer "enraging" in a tweet. 

Skirmishes between protesters and police reportedly continued throughout the night to Wednesday.

Read more: Hong Kong crisis — What you need to know

A day of heightened violence

Demonstrators stand around a fire on the streets in Hong Kong
Violent protests in Hong Kong coincided with mainland China's celebrations of its 70 year anniversary.Image: AFP/P. Wong

It followed a day of heightened violence in the former British territory on Tuesday as protests were planned to coincide with China's 70-year anniversary on October 1.

In addition to the the man who was shot, more than 100 were injured, health authorities said, including one other critically injured person. Police officers arrested over 180 people. 

China's leader Xi Jinping promised in a speech on Monday to stick to a commitment to allow the territory's leaders to manage its own affairs.

Hong Kong residents wake to widespread damage

Barricades in Tsuen Wan district in Hong Kong
Many businesses closed for the day in Hong Kong before a violent day of protests on Tuesday.Image: AFP/P. Wong

The demonstrators also left widespread damage following Tuesday's unrest although all metro stations were open on Wednesday morning. 

Many stores and business had closed on Tuesday but this did not stop some being targeted with graffiti and vandalized.

kp,kmm/ng (AFP, Reuters)