Hong Kong police arrest suspect in officer’s stabbing at protest
Hong Kong authorities on Thursday arrested a 24-year-old suspect at the city’s airport on suspicion of stabbing an officer while protesting a new national security law imposed by Beijing.
The man’s arrest came one day after protests that led police to use tear gas and water cannons on over 300 people who were demonstrating against the national security legislation that seeks to stomp out dissidence, according to Reuters.
There were no signs of protests on Thursday, according to the report.
Authorities uploaded pictures of the suspect to Twitter on Wednesday, showing an officer with a bleeding arm along with allegations saying he was stabbed by “rioters holding sharp objects.”
The suspect reportedly fled the scene while other bystanders offered no support to the bleeding officer, authorities said.
A spokesman for the police said the arrested man was surnamed Wong.
Authorities could not confirm whether he worked at the airport or was attempting to leave Hong Kong, but Reuters reported some media outlets cited unidentified sources alleging the suspect was on board a Cathay Pacific flight to London.
A witness at the scene said three police vehicles drove towards the gate as the plane was preparing to take off, followed by 10 riot police running up the aircraft bridge.
The suspect had an expired British National Overseas passport with him, which grants special status and provides a route to citizenship, the source told the media station.
The Hill has reached out to Cathay Pacific but did not immediately hear back.
Former Hong Kong leader Leung Chun-ying created a post on Facebook Wednesday saying that a bounty of HK$500,000 ($64,513) would be granted to anyone helping find the suspected fugitive.
Since last year, protests in Hong Kong have erupted as Beijing’s imposition of a new national security measure seeks to impede on previous freedoms and judicial independence.
These freedoms were to be guaranteed by a “one country, two systems” policy agreed upon when the financial center returned to Chinese rule in 1997, but have been called into jeopardy following Beijing’s attempts to assimilate Hong Kong under the laws of the mainland.