HONG KONG—Thousands of Hong Kong protesters marched in the pouring rain on Aug. 25, a day after police fired tear gas for the first time in more than a week.
Three metro stations in the area were closed in anticipation of a planned march in the Tsuen Wan district.
“I think it’s time to stand out and then tell the societies and our people that we should do something right,” said one of the protesters Mary. “Instead of just keeping silent or just letting it go.”
The march began at 3 p.m. local time. People flooded the streets despite the nearest operating station being about a mile away from the march site.
“The only thing that we can do is to march, is to protest, is to rally legally or illegally,” another protester, Heson, said. “This is the only way we can speak out.”
‘Stand with Hong Kong’
Protesters are looking to the international community for support.
“We are waiting for any international help,” Heson said. “Maybe from President Trump, maybe from our British government.”
“Please stand with Hong Kong,” he pleaded. “Please keep our solidarity as a free world [country] so that one day we may still as a member of the free world, we can communicate with each other to speak [sic] whatever we want to and enjoy our freedom of speech.”
The mass protests that initially targeted a now-suspended extradition bill have since expanded to include an independent inquiry into police use of force and universal suffrage for the Hong Kong people.
“It’s pretty bad,” Stephen, a Hong Kong citizen marching in the parade, told NTD Television. “Instead of one country two systems, this bill would make it into one country one system.”
No Rule of Law
Joshua, a young protester, said he doesn’t trust the legal system in Hong Kong or mainland China.
“I know that actually, if the extradition bill will pass, many of the Hong Kongers will be sent to China for other political reasons which will harm ourselves and put our Hong Kongers and also many foreigners in danger,” he said.
Rain didn’t stop the crowds of people from marching together in the streets to have their voices heard.
Citizens of all ages chanted slogans like, “Fight for freedom” and “Stand with Hong Kong.”
Protesters are saying that they won’t stop until the government responds to their five demands, including an independent review into police use of force in crowd clearing operations and for Hong Kongers to be granted the power to directly elect their own leader.
“We will stay strong, right the wrong, and save Hong Kong,” Joshua said. “For the foreigners,” he said, “I know that we Hong Kongers receive lots of support from worldwide, and I want to say thank you to all of you.”
He asked for the world’s people to continue to stand with Hong Kong and to closely watch the police, the Hong Kong government, and the Chinese communist regime.
“Because when you monitor them, Tiananmen Square may not happen again in Hong Kong,” he said.