The Civil Human Rights Front has called on the public to take part in its annual New Year’s Day march in order to “defend Hong Kong.”
The protest will take place on January 1, 2018. It will begin at East Point Road, Causeway Bay at 2pm, and end at government headquarters in Admiralty.
At a press conference on Thursday, vice-convenor Carlos Hung said that the group has seen decadence in the system on different fronts in Hong Kong. According to him, this was demonstrated by the amendment of the legislature’s procedural rules, the potential legislation of the national security law, the passing of the controversial joint checkpoint arrangement for the high-speed rail, and land issues in the northeast New Territories and Wang Chau.
Hung also said that on the topic of political oppression – which includes the prosecutions of activists and the legislature’s demand that disqualified lawmakers repay their salaries – “these matters are deserving of the public’s concern and deserve them coming out to let the government know that we will not accept these things in Hong Kong.”
“The worst times have come… destroying the legislature and civil society is the government’s objective,” lawmaker Shiu Ka-chun said. Shiu said that on January 9, the trial of nine defendants charged with public nuisance in relation to the pro-democracy Occupy protests will officially commence. Shiu is one of the nine.
“I only wish to tell all of you today – don’t think that it’s none of your business. There are no strangers, no survivors in these times of authoritarianism and oppression… I hope we will all come out to support ourselves, to defend Hong Kong and your own dignity,” Shiu said.
“If you want to defend Hong Kong, coming out in January is already too late. You should come out tonight and tomorrow,” Chan said, referring to planned protests against proposed amendments of the legislature’s house rules.
The group said they have applied for a notice of no-objection from the police but have yet to receive a reply.