Hong Kong Police Commissioner Chris Tang Ping-keung addresses the media in Hong Kong, Nov 22, 2019. (PHOTO / CHINA DAILY)
Hong Kong's police chief on Friday reiterated the force's desire to peacefully resolve the standoff at Hong Kong Polytechnic University and called on the remaining 100 or so protesters to leave the campus.
Although the past week has been difficult and dangerous for the police, the officers have showcased their fearlessness, Police Commissioner Tang Ping-keung said
Speaking to the media, Police Commissioner Chris Tang Ping-keung urged those who are still occupying the PolyU campus to come out and surrender to the police.
Tang reiterated the police force's promise not to arrest those under the age of 18 for now. Minors will be allowed to leave after police record their personal information.
Arrestees, as always, will be treated fairly, Tang added.
The campus is very dangerous at the moment, with a lot of explosives, including gasoline bombs, scattered about, Tang said.
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"You don't want your family, friends, and people coming to visit you to worry about you," he told the resisters.
The PolyU campus has been occupied and used as a stronghold by radical protesters since Nov 15. Police sealed off the university on Sunday night and announced that all the occupiers on campus were participating in a riot, and asked them to leave the campus and surrender to police.
An indoor area in Hong Kong Polytechnic University is seen littered with metal barricades, bricks, furniture items and assorted trash in the morning of Nov 18, 2019. (PHOTO / CHINA DAILY)
As of Wednesday, about 1,000 people had left the campus peacefully. About 300 of them were younger than 18, according to the police.
It is believed that about 100 hard-core protesters are still on the campus.
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Although the past week has been difficult and dangerous for the police, the officers have showcased their fearlessness, Tang said. Some officers have worked more than 30 hours straight. Some faced attacks of hundreds of gasoline bombs, bricks, and metal balls, he added.
Among the injured officers during the PolyU standoff was a police officer with the Police Public Relations Branch, who on Sunday was struck in the calf by an arrow shot by a rioter.
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