| The following Press Release issued by the OCLP Secretariat
( October 17, 2014, Hong Kong SAR, Sri Lanka Guardian) We are all outraged by the extrajudicial punishment dished out on protesters by the police. Today the police finally decided to suspend from duty the seven police officers who allegedly carried out the attacks, and will conduct a criminal investigation. OCLP is paying close attention to the progress of the investigation and urges the authorities to make the results of the investigation public as soon as possible, as well as the investigations into excessive force used by the police in dispersing the protesters in Lung Wo Road.
Since the police used excessive force in the clearance operation in the early morning of the 15th of this month, some 'sporadic acts of occupation' and obstruction of traffic sprang up in Lung Wo Road yesterday, which shows the increasing tension between demonstrators and frontline police officers. Although OCLP finds the abuse of power by individual police officers to be hateful, we urge every occupier not to forget our original intention, that is to fight for a democratic political system with love and peace. Our target should be the dictator who ignores public opinion. We should not misfire and give the government an excuse for repression.
We urge the occupiers to continue to safeguard the 'Umbrella Square'. If someone chooses to further block the road or extend the occupation area, that will surely intensify the conflict among citizens, which is what Leung Chun-ying would love to see. It also gives the government a reason for clearance due to rising 'public resentment'. More importantly, for civil disobedience to be successful, understanding and support from the public have to be sought.
We strongly condemn the police officers for abusing their power. However, we also call for protesters to show understanding and sympathy if the police are carrying out their duties lawfully. They have simply been pushed into the position of our opponents by an unjust system and the hardliners in the government. We hope all protesters not to forget what it was we set out to do - to resist a dictatorial government with love and peace.
Brief report on the injuries of protesters sustained during the forceful clearance of Lung Wo Road
On the morning of October 15th the police used excessive force on some protesters and supporters during the clearance of Lung Wo Road. Apart from Tsang Kin-chiu who was subjected to extrajudicial punishment from several police officers, even those citizens who had retreated to Tamar Park were pepper sprayed or pushed to the ground. It is clear the level of force used by the police was not appropriate. From the injuries seen during the medical examinations of multiple arrested people, kicking and punching was not an isolated incident. We urge any other occupiers and supporters who were subjected to brutal treatment on the night to contact our legal assistance group on 91677091. Let the facts speak, don’t let the police only talk about the number of injured officers.
Here are some of the cases:
male, 21 years-old, third year university student
Pepper sprayed at close range by police in Tamar Park in the early hours of October 15th, officer then tore his goggles off and pepper sprayed him again. He shut both eyes which hurt intensely and curled up on the ground with his back facing up. Police aimed intense light in front of him after which he felt a baton and fists on his body and head. His arms were twisted and his wrists tied. His body was then turned over and his face and body were crushed. A baton hit his face, there was a foot on his chest. His legs were forced apart and he felt someone sitting on his thighs and groin.
He has subconjunctival haemorrhage in his right eye, facial scratches; there is tenderness in spots on the scalp. There are two lines of bruising on his right arm and bruising to the armpits and to the outer sides of the feet.
male, 20 years-old
He was coming out of the Lung Wo Road tunnel in the early hours of October 15 when a police officer pulled him to the ground. He was stamped on and beaten with a baton and fists. The beatings continued after he was handcuffed. An officer pulled off his facemask and a necklace he was wearing.
The back of his neck clearly bears the marks and lacerations from where his necklace was pulled. There is bruising to his back and legs; his face, elbows and legs are all injured.
male 21 years-old
Saw someone fall down in Tamar Park in the early hours of 15th October and tried to help the person get up. Several police officers pressed him to the ground and kicked his body, trod on his head. His hands were tied together too tightly. When he turned his head to look behind him as he waited to board a police vehicle, an officer slapped him on both sides of his face.
There is bruising to the insides of both his arms and scratch marks on the backs of his arms. His wrists are swollen from the too tight ties that were used to bind them. There is bruising in his right thigh and clear bruising in the inner thigh/groin area. He also has slight swelling on his chest beneath the clavicle and on his back near the waist.
male, 26 years-old
He was in the promenade part of Tamar Park in the early hours of 15th October. A member of the crowd to his right lost their balance and fell down. Lam held out his hand to try and lift the person up. At this time, several officers grabbed him. He felt three punches to his face and his arms being forced up. One officer pulled him backwards and twisted his hands and tied them. He was kicked in the back.
There are clear injuries to his lips, his right eyelid is injured and there are red marks on his back.
male, 25 years-old
He was retreating to the sidewalk outside the Chief Executive’s Office when the clearance was taking place but because there were too many people behind, there was no room to retreat. Advancing police pulled him into a huddle of officers, they pulled off his facemask and goggles. He was then pressed to the ground by multiple officers who trod on his head. He was facing down when his hands were twisted behind his back and his head was smashed to the ground two or three times. While he was pressed to the ground, he was kicked and punched in the shoulder area. He had to plead with officers to loosen his handcuffs because they were too tight, this was refused. He felt officers putting their hands around his neck with great force.
He has multiple injuries in his legs; his forehead, cheeks and left eye have clear bruising; skin is broken, neck is bruised, arms have scratch marks. He has pain in his shoulder blades.
male, 21 year-old, second year university student
He was videoing the arrests of other protesters in Tamar Park during the clearance. As he was leaving, the police rushed forwards and forcefully pulled on his backpack then pushed him, making him fall down. He tried to get up again but several police officers pressed down on him with great force and put their hands around his neck. He was subject to a flurry of punching and kicking. After his hands were tied, his head was smashed to the ground once. At the same time, a police officer was shouting at him, “You wanna play games?”.
He has clear bruising to his forehead. His skin is broken, his neck has bruises, and large areas of wounds in both knees and elbows.