The Police have been in close communication with the public to prepare people for potential protests.

 

Police Public Relations Branch Chief Superintendent Tse Chun-chung made the statement in a press conference today.

 

Mr Tse said the Sham Shui Po Police Station received hundreds of letters from community organisations and members of the community expressing concerns over the potential violence used by radical protesters.

 

“We have also forewarned them about the potential use of tear gas in the dispersal operation.

 

“This shows Police have close communication with the public to help them prepare for potential protests taking place in their communities.

 

“We are aware that some members of the public are concerned about the use of tear gas in residential areas. I hope they understand that the Police never wish to use tear gas or deploy any kind of force.

 

“Our force is always used in response to the violence of the protesters.”

 

Mr Tse added that as many as 700 radical protesters surrounded Sham Shui Po Police Station yesterday night, shooting marbles and laser beams at police officers and buildings.

 

He said officers deployed tear gas and minimum force to disperse protesters after conducting a risk assessment and restored public order in the area within a short period.

 

“It’s the fourth time in 10 days the Sham Shui Po Police Station was maliciously damaged.

 

“I would like to stress that Police always respect the right to assembly and freedom of speech, but using violence to achieve their goals is not to be tolerated by society. The Police strongly condemn all these violent acts.”