Police bike a poster for anger

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 03 July, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 03 July, 2012, 12:00am


A photograph of a police motorbike showered with protest banners and handbills during the July 1 rally has stirred heated discussion in the force and made waves on the internet.

Parked on Jardine's Bazaar in Causeway Bay, the motorbike was littered with posters opposing Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying, and flags calling for universal suffrage.

It is understood that many officers were angered by protesters' behaviour, which they see as disrespectful.

'This [photo] shows residents are discontented with police, which I understand. The police should reflect on why so many people hate them,' Eric Lai Yan-ho, convenor of the Civil Human Rights Front, who organised the march, said.

A Junior Police Officers' Association spokesman expressed regret and said that while officers respected citizens' rights to protest, he stressed that they should also obey the law.

Barrister Albert Luk Wai-hung said sticking posters on police vehicles was not a criminal offence unless the person deliberately damaged it.

The motorbike incident was among many flashpoints between the public and police during the handover anniversary rally.

A police spokesman said it would follow up the incident. He appealed to people not to put things on police vehicles as it could obstruct officers from carrying out their duties.

Media groups including the Hong Kong Journalists Association will be meeting police director of operations Paul Hung Hak-wai today to demand an explanation on why an Apple Daily reporter was hauled away from the press area after he asked President Hu Jintao about the Tiananmen crackdown.

League of Social Democrats member Faning Yim was arrested on Sunday on Causeway Road for causing disorder in a public place. Police said two policewomen were injured while Yim attempted to breach a police cordon. But Yim said officers pushed her to the ground. She was granted bail.

The arrest came just 20 minutes before an officer's baton was lost at around 4.45pm, when thousands of demonstrators flocked out of Victoria Park. The police are appealing for the return of the baton, warning that the possession of a restricted weapon could be an offence.

Ricky Chu Man-kin, secretary general of the Independent Police Complaints Council who observed the march, said the police's handling of protesters was largely appropriate.