Hundreds of protesters rallied in Hong Kong’s Edinburgh Place on Dec. 6, demanding police stop using tear gas in residential areas. They say it’s excessive and harms innocent bystanders.
More than 10,000 rounds of tear gas have been fired by Hong Kong police since June.
Rally participants expressed fear of possible health risks from the noxious clouds of gas.
“I think part of the reason why we are having this assembly is to raise awareness among the public about the effects of tear gas,” protester Cheryl Cheung said.
“We urge the government to actually publish and investigate the main ingredients of the tear gas,” another protester Leung said.
Speakers at the event included medical professionals and university researchers. They shared their concerns about the health impacts of crowd control mechanisms.
One speaker accused police of firing tear gas into densely populated neighborhoods and enclosed areas, and turning their homeland “into a citywide gas chamber.”
“The most important thing we are trying here is to urge the government to disclose the components of tear gas and implement measures of remedy methods,” rally organizer Milo Chan said.
Protestors are demanding an investigation into police use of force, including tear gas.
A pro-democracy march is set for Sunday. Organizers expect a large turnout, intended to show the movement still has strong momentum.
Police said they will intervene “immediately” if Sunday’s march turns violent.