One pro-democracy lawmaker was arrested on Friday evening and at least six others were asked to report to various police stations to be arrested at a later date over a raucous day in Legco in May, in which rival camps competed to hold their own versions of a bills committee to vet the aborted legislation at the heart of the Hong Kong protests.
A message posted on the Facebook account of Land Justice League lawmaker Chu Hoi-dick said he was arrested near his home for allegedly obstructing another legislator from executing his or her duties on May 11.
He is said to be accused of violating Article 19 of Legco's Powers and Privileges Ordinance.
Six other pro-democracy legislators, including Ray Chan, Lam Cheuk-ting, Gary Fan, Au Nok-hin, Leung Yiu-chung and Kwok Ka-ki all subsequently said that police have contacted them to make ‘arrests-by-appointment’.
Chaos had broken out on May 11 after both the pan-democratic and pro-government camps both claimed to be holding the only legitimate meeting of the bills committee vetting the now-withdrawn extradition bill.
The pro-government camp had said Abraham Shek was the presiding lawmaker, while the pan-dems had insisted that James To had been elected chairman.
Scuffles broke out and several lawmakers were injured after the rival groups attempted to hold meetings in the same room, at the same time.
That chaos would ultimately reach far beyond the legislature, with the extradition bill sparking five months of increasingly violent protests and pitched the city into political crisis.
Twenty-four pan-democrat lawmakers later issued a joint statement saying they are enraged by the arrests, and warned the government that its misguided attempt to silence dissent will only add fuel to the fire.
They condemned the government for “trampling on the dignity of the Legislative Council”, and added that none of them fear arrest in their fight to protect civil rights and combat the extradition law.
The lawmakers also urged people to remain calm, to avoid falling into what they say is a government ‘trap’ to set the conditions for cancelling the upcoming district council elections on November 24, which many observers believe will see a surge in voter support for pro-democracy candidates.
Last updated: 2019-11-09 HKT 00:53
Pan-democrats to be arrested over Legco chaos
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