HONG KONG – Commissioner of Hong Kong Police Steven Lo Wai-chung has confirmed that police have used a range of weapons — including rubber bullets — to disperse protestors in the city center.
Alongside rubber bullets police have used tear gas, batons, pepper spray, pepper-spray solution and bean-bag rounds on Wednesday, Lo confirmed.
Lo defended the use of the heavy-duty emergency weapons by labelling the protest “a riot.”
He said the protesters had attacked police lines and left officers with “no choice but to start to use force.” He added that the pro-democracy protesters had used sharpened iron bars and bricks, resulting in injuries to a number of officers.
Demonstrators are protesting against a proposed law that would allow Hong Kong to extradite fugitives to territories where it doesn’t have formal extradition deals, including mainland China, Taiwan and Macau.
The government says the Fugitive Offenders and Mutual Legal Assistance in Criminal Matters Legislation (Amendment) Bill 2019 merely closes loopholes that have prevented officials from bringing criminals to justice.