Hong Kong protests: PolyU demands end to campus siege

Top authorities of Hong Kong’s Polytechnic University (PolyU), have released two statements demanding police allow the remaining protesters still hiding on campus to leave without arresting them.

The statements were signed by University Chairman Lam Tai-Fai, President Teng Jin-Guang and other senior officials.

This came after Medicins Sans Frontieres, which has sent teams into PolyU’s campus, raised concerns about the physical and mental state of the holdouts.

The first statement released indicated that the university is in utter chaos, laden with damaged objects, petrol bombs, and hazardous items, which pose a great threat to personal safety.

In the second statement, the university said it will meet with the police to arrange for the peaceful departure of those who remain on the campus.

Several student protesters were previously arrested while trying to run from the campus and dozens of others were met with tear gas and rubber bullets.

Although, a small number has managed to successfully leave the campus using rope ladders before being picked up by police on motorcycles.

According, to Hong Kong’s hospital over 116 people have been injured in relation to the PolyU demonstration.

Police have issued a warning to protesters that they had until 22:00 (14:00 GMT) to vacate the campus, or they would use live ammunition if the attacks continued.

Concerned parents of children who are trapped inside the University held a peaceful rally on Monday night in Tsim Sha Tsui province, appealing for the safe exit of their wards from the besieged campus.

Anti-government protests on campuses

This all began after ongoing anti-government protests, now in its sixth month, moved from the streets into campuses.

The Chinese University of Hong Kong was the first battleground between student demonstrators and police. Police said protesters threw petrol bombs on a major road near the university in an effort to create gridlock. Officers attempted to restore order, leading to a major clash.

Last week, more than 1,000 masked radicals’ protesters occupied PolyU cafeteria for days, engaging in fierce street battles with riot police. Fighting that will go down as one of the most violent clashes during the six months of unrest.

According to police vehicle was set ablaze, footbridges were set on fire, and some was burnt while another officer had his calf pierced by an arrow. Police responded with tear gas and water cannon, also blocking all exits surrounding the campus.

Since then, more than 1,000 surrendered or were caught and arrested. This including about 300 minors. PolyU decried it has been severely and extensively vandalized, adding of all those arrested only 50 were its students.

Campaign for freedom

Dozens of people showed up at Hong Kong’s financial district on Monday in support of those who were still hiding at PolyU and are refusing to surrender.

Dressed in office attire, they gathered on Pedder Street in Central and chanted slogans supporting them. However, riot police arrived at the scene and warned them not to occupy the roads.

The protesters called on United States President Donald Trump to sign into law the Hong Kong Human Rights and Democracy Act, which will mean sanctions on Chinese and Hong Kong officials who violate human rights in the city.