Written by: Chen Nuoxi
2020-06-08 07:30Last update date: 2020-06-08 07:30
Last year, the government proposed amendments to the "Fugitive Offenders Ordinance", which caused uproar. In June, demonstrations began to flourish. Conflicts between the police and the public gradually became the norm. Many districts in Hong Kong have been baptized by tear gas. It has become a "battlefield" and conflicts often continue into the early hours. For the midnight market hawkers in the area, the most memorable must be August 14 last year, which is the 14th July Lantern Festival (Ghost Festival) of the Lunar Calendar. Some netizens launched a clothes-burning event in Sham Shui Po that night, and more than 100 demonstrators Once occupying multiple traffic lanes on Qinzhou Street, after the police repeatedly raised black flags and orange flags, the riot police then released tear gas in the area to disperse the demonstrators. The hawkers all experienced a thrilling night.
"I remember the Japanese (Lunar Calendar) July 14th, a lot of people around were burning clothes, suddenly a few "bang, bang" sounds, so loud! Then all the white smoke in front of me, I thought it was a ghost!" More than 70 years old Sister Ai, who has been stalling near Guilin Street for more than 20 years, did not hit ghosts at the Ghost Festival last year, but for her it was the most terrifying ghost festival.
"I remember the Japanese (Lunar Calendar) July 14th, a lot of people around were burning clothes, suddenly a few "bang, bang" sounds, so loud! Then all the white smoke in front of me, I thought it was a ghost!" Ai said The conflict situation last year still has a lingering fear. (Photo by Yu Junliang)
Sham Shui Po is commonly known as "Beihe Fourth Street" (Beihe Street, Keelung Street, Danan Street and Guilin Street). After the shop enters the night pass shop, the vendors at the Midnight Market pull a variety of goods to the street to sell. Sister Ai brings 2 pet dogs Xiaoyun and Xiaoji to the stall every night without changing. She experienced the clearance of FEHD staff and several sweeps. She was baptized with tear gas for the first time last year. Four tear gas bombs had landed at her stall and she was burning her goods. She hurriedly took her dog to escape.
Sister Ai deeply remembers that night was July 14th of the lunar calendar. There were no demonstrators gathering in the streets near her stall. "Suddenly, there were a few "bangs, bangs", so loud! After that, all the white smoke in front of me, I thought it was a ghost. "In an instant, the pungent smell attacked her nose and her eyes continued to flow. She had not yet understood the situation in front of her and had to rush out of the white smoke with her dog to escape. "It's coughing, and it's drooling. Afterwards, there will be babies in the same neighborhood to help me wash my eyes." She pointed out that the police released tear gas several times in a row without warning. "There are no demonstrations in the vicinity. Pet dogs Xiaoyun and Xiaoji felt uncomfortable in the incident and did not eat for several days, which made Sister Ai worried. Fortunately, there was no big deal.
Hawker Abandoned Goods and Fleeing: Life Is Important!
Another midnight hawker, sister Qiao, said that she had experienced tear gas being released by the police twice during the stall. There were other hawkers who were seriously unwell after inhaling the tear gas and needed to stay in hospital. Other hawkers could not sleep at night after the police dispersed. Sister Qiao said that due to the sudden incident, the situation was chaotic at that time, and the hawkers abandoned the goods and fled after seeing the tear gas. "The executives are stubborn, and the goods have fallen all the way. All of them are surprised!" She continued to point out that the police released tear gas one after another. The street was white and there were no fingers. She had no choice but to pick up a small amount of goods and fled the scene. "All the restaurants immediately pulled the drying gates and ran away. Three-thirds The two goods will not be carried away, and they will eclipse a few thousand or two thousand mosquitoes, but there is no way, life is important!"
The hawkers returned to the stalls after the tears dispersed, hoping to retrieve the more complete goods. However, after experiencing the "Go Ghost" campaign, Sister Qiao who used to push 2 cars to open the gear has changed to only push 1 car to put the gear in place. "If you have something to go, you can push it into the car, and it will not cause too much erosion. ". Sister Qiao said that at the time, the scene was mainly old and weak women and children. Everyone had to "go into trouble." She was helpless and described the dangers of avoiding the time and danger. Some people fell injured and need to be lifted by others. The usual way of writing is "On the End").
In addition to the people who came to the "Treasure Hunt" at the Midnight Market, FEHD staff were also "regular customers." They often go to the area to clear the site, and then go to the nearby to monitor the situation. In order to avoid being charged, the hawkers had to postpone the opening time in the past. However, both Sister Qiao and Sister Ai said that during the anti-revision movement, no FEHD staff were seen in the midnight market.
During the anti-amendment conflict last year, there were several demonstrations in the Sham Shui Po District, including the siege of the police station. The police also dispersed the demonstrators in the district on many occasions. Li Dacheng, an officer of the CSSA Low Income Alliance, revealed that because of the wide range of police dispersal, hawkers in the midnight market must be "hard food". As usual, the hawkers who have opened their stalls have experienced at least 3 similar incidents. He has also joined other co-workers to the district Help the hawker pick up. He pointed out that a hawker said that there were no demonstrators nearby when the incident occurred. He did not expect that the police would suddenly release tear gas without interruption.
Netizens launch "clothing party", police release tear gas to disperse
On August 14 last year, on the evening of the Lan Lan Festival on July 14th of the lunar calendar, some netizens launched the "Shen Shui Po Laser Burning Clothes and the Yin Blessing Evening Party". That night, demonstrators gathered at the street burning street clothes opposite the Sham Shui Po Police Station. During this period, someone continued to use laser light to the police station. At about 9 pm, the police began to use tear gas to disperse the crowd. There were tear gas in Qinzhou Street, Lai Chi Kok Road, Keelung Street, etc. However, some neighborhoods said that when the police released the tear gas, most of the demonstrators had dispersed, but the tear gas But the street vendors and hawkers spread to the neighborhood and midnight market.
On the next day of the incident, on August 15, the commander of the Sham Shui Po Police District, He Qixuan, said at a police press conference at 4 pm that he believed that the commander at the scene "must have to wait until there is a so-called Threat". Using tear gas to disperse the masses, he emphasized that he would not use weapons without a target, but he did not add what was the target at that time.
Fugitive Offenders Sham Shui Po community Sham Shui Po tear gas