Hong Kong authorities on Monday (September 28th) banned a democracy activist group from holding a demonstration on October 1, the anniversary of the founding of the People's Republic of China.
In China, the day is a public holiday and marked with carefully choreographed celebrations, but in Hong Kong it has become a day of concern for those worried about Beijing's increased control over this territory.
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The police opposed the demonstration under the pretext of public health, security, protection of rights and people's freedom
," police chief Superintendent Cheung Chi-wai told reporters on Monday.
The request for permission to demonstrate was filed by the Civil Human Rights Front (CHRF), the coalition that organized the major pro-democracy protests last year, to demand the release of a group of twelve Hong Kong residents detained in China.
This group tried to escape to the island of Taiwan by boat but was intercepted by the Chinese coastguard and is being held in China.
Hong Kong police will mobilize for October 1.
At least 3,000 police officers will be available in the event of a demonstration, a police source who requested anonymity told AFP.
Since June, the new security law adopted in Hong Kong allows the authorities to criminalize the expression of certain opinions.
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During the rare demonstrations that have seen the light of day, riot police and plainclothes police quickly intervened: in a single day in early September, nearly 300 people were arrested.
More than 10,000 people have been arrested in the past 16 months.
Many leaders of the democratic opposition are being sued.