Hong Kong Man Commits Suicide After Stabbing Police Officer

A local media report says he left a suicide note hitting out at the national security law and criticizing police conduct.
Hong Kong Man Commits Suicide After Stabbing Police Officer The scene of a knife attack against a Hong Kong police officer and suicide of the attacker is shown in a July 1, 2021 photo.

A 50-year-old man who died Thursday night after stabbing himself in the chest and a police officer in the back left a suicide note criticizing a draconian national security law imposed on Hong Kong a year earlier by the ruling Chinese Communist Party (CCP), according to a local media report.

Government broadcaster RTHK said the man had knifed himself immediately after stabbing a 28-year-old officer in Causeway Bay. He was later pronounced dead at hospital. The officer is currently in hospital in a serious condition with a punctured lung.

"Sources said officers found a suicide note in a USB flash drive found on him, which explained his actions," RTHK reported.

"The note was critical of the police and contained views on how the national security law had undermined people's freedom," the station cited the sources as saying.

Photos posted to social media on Friday showed some people wearing black leaving flowers at the scene, with some of them stopped for ID checks by nearby police.

“Initial investigations indicate that this is a lone wolf-style act of domestic terrorism,” secretary for security Chris Tang told reporters, blaming "many people who incite hatred against this country."

Shih Chien-yu, a visiting professor at Taiwan's Tsinghua University, said Tang's description of the attack was a bid to implicate the whole of Hong Kong.

"For the ruling party to define this as a terrorist attack in a society that has already shown its dissatisfaction with the regime is tantamount to smearing the whole of Hong Kong," Shih told RFA.

"But his motivations aren't representative of the whole of Hong Kong society," he said.

Law widely criticized

China's imposition of the national security law on Hong Kong from July 1, 2020 has been widely criticized by foreign governments and rights organizations as a means for the authorities to roll back human rights protections that were promised to the city's seven million inhabitants under the terms of the 1997 handover.

The law criminalizes public dissent and publications critical of the government, and has led to an ever-widening crackdown on opposition lawmakers, rights activists, and journalists critical of Chinese and Hong Kong officials.

Defendants under the law are often denied bail, and cases brought under the law are heard by a panel of hand-picked judges, rather than by a jury, as was previously the norm in the Hong Kong legal system.

Hong Kong's police force were also strongly criticized for excessive use of force during the 2019 protest movement, and for curbing citizens' right to assemble and protest peacefully.

Activist denied bail

A Hong Kong court on Friday denied a bail application by rights activist and barrister Chow Hang-tung, who was recently arrested for "inciting others to knowingly take part in an illegal assembly," in connection with the now-banned candlelight vigil for the victims of the 1989 Tiananmen massacre.

Chow arrived by Correctional Services vehicle at West Kowloon Magistrates' Court, where the presiding judge denied her application, "owing to the seriousness of the case."

She was remanded in custody until July 30.

Richard Choi, chairman of vigil organizers the Hong Kong Alliance in Support of Democratic Patriotic Movements of China, said Chow, 36, was being punished with "prison before trial."

The decision came after Chow's relatives posted an account in which she hit out at unnecessary physical touching during a body search in police custody.

"Another thing that's unreasonable is getting me to take off my trousers, pulling my shirt up, and touching my chest while searching me," she wrote in a comment posted to her Facebook account after the bail hearing on Friday.

"I only went to meet with my lawyer; did they think they were going to pass me something to hide in my bra?" Chow wrote. "But reason is no longer any use against such abuses of power in Hong Kong."

Reported by Lau Siu Fung for RFA's Cantonese Service. Translated and edited by Luisetta Mudie.

Mister says:
Jul 05, 2021 12:19 PM

This is terrorism and these antigovernment people need to stop!!

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