Hong Kong detains 228 protesters after pro-democracy march


HONG KONG (BNO NEWS) — More than 200 protesters were arrested in Hong Kong during an annual pro-democracy march, police said on Saturday.

According to Radio Television Hong Kong, police released a statement saying that 228 people had been detained for illegal assembly and obstruction of public places after staging a sit-in in the city centre, which continued overnight. Demonstrators paralyzed traffic in the central business district after Friday’s peaceful march and refused to leave.

Police said those arrested were being freed on bail in stages.

Legislator Albert Chan, who was among the first of those released, accused the police of abusing their power. He said officers used pepper spray against a number of demonstrators, and at least one protester was hurt. Police, however, maintained that only the minimum necessary force was used.

Thousands of people joined the annual protest rally, which marked the anniversary of the former British colony’s return to China, to protest against a government proposal to abolish by-elections. The government, however, insists the decision is constitutional.

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