Demosistō lawmaker Nathan Law was attacked on Sunday evening by pro-China protesters upon his arrival at Hong Kong International Airport following a visit to Taiwan.

The former Occupy activist was surrounded by demonstrators who accused him of colluding with pro-independence forces in Taiwan. The group attempted to assault him at the airport’s arrival hall. His shirt was torn and his glasses flew off. He was also sprayed with a liquid. Law then made a report with the police and arranged to have his injuries inspected.

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Law, along with Demosistō secretary-general Joshua Wong and pro-democracy lawmakers Eddie Chu Hoi-dick and Edward Yiu Chung-yim, had been attending a forum in Taipei at the invitation of Taiwan’s New Power Party.

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Law speaking at the Taiwan forum. Photo: 羅冠聰 Nathan Law via Facebook.

According to sources cited by Commercial Radio, two men were arrested for attacking three protesters.

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Photo: 羅冠聰 Nathan Law via Facebook.

Twenty five pro-democracy lawmakers have released a statement following the attack, denouncing the demonstrators for adopting violent methods under the banner of patriotism: “We demand that the police immediately investigate the group’s violent crimes and bring the culprits to justice.”

Police action questioned 

The councillors said they will raise questions with the Security Bureau on the matter of security measures at the airport. They will ask why the police had allowed the crowd to gather and carry out such actions, severely compromising the airport’s reputation for safety. They also questioned why the police had not made arrangements such as setting up a protest zone despite the fact that they knew there would be demonstrations against Law.

They further criticised the protesters for attacking reporters from Now TV and i-Cable TV, adding that they will not tolerate violent actions which obstruct freedom of the press. They expressed sympathies to Law and the injured journalists, wishing them a speedy recovery.

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Now TV reported that the protesters made a report to the police and asked “individuals holding different opinions to respect reporters, and protect freedom of speech and the press.”

‘Senseless’ violence 

The New Power Party addressed the attacks in a statement, slamming the “senseless’ and “irrational” acts of violence. It stressed that Hong Kong is governed by the rule of law, and the authorities must protect the safety of all citizens. They said that interactions between civil societies were normal and that they will fight on in the face of violence and threats.

Law will address the attack at a press conference at 4pm on Monday.

Karen is a journalist and writer covering politics and legal affairs in Hong Kong for HKFP. She has also written features on human rights, public space, regional legal developments, social and grassroots activism, and arts & culture. She is a BA and LLB graduate from the University of Hong Kong.