Hong Kong cancels 130 flights as protesters flood its airport

Elias Hubbard
August 13, 2019

Protesters hand out leaflets at the arrival hall of the Hong Kong International Airport during a demonstration on August 11, 2019.

Hong Kong Airport authorities have cancelled all remaining flights as protestors descended on the terminal for a fourth day.

Increasingly violent protests have plunged Hong Kong into its most serious crisis in decades and presented a serious challenge to Beijing.

"Radical demonstrators have repeatedly used extremely unsafe tools to attack police officers, which already constitutes a serious violent crime, and also shows the first signs of terrorism emerging".

Hong Kong police have admitted deploying officers disguised as anti-government protesters during mass unrest that rocked the city on Sunday.

A massive traffic jam soon formed on the highway leading back to Hong Kong's city center, but hundreds of protesters remained in the arrivals hall well into the night with no sign of leaving.

Canadian passengers who have booked flights for future dates to travel through Hong Kong to Canada said they haven't received much clarity from Air Canada or Cathay Pacific on the potential cancellations. The airport has been filled with anti-government protesters for four days.

"For the CIA's hand to be openly involved in formatting dissent within other nations doesn't look good, so they started this private non-profit, which is mostly funded by the United States government, to do the same work that during the Cold War had been done by the CIA", Wong explained.

Trudeau also said he was focused on the need to protect Canada's interests in Hong Kong, which is home to about 300,000 Canadian citizens.

The activists at the airport have been polite and passengers mostly unperturbed.

"I suppose it's one way to make people get annoyed at the protesters", she told the ABC.

A senior official in the administration of USA president Donald Trump on Monday urged "all sides" to avoid violence in Hong Kong.

Still, scores of protesters were arrested, sometimes after being beaten with batons and bloodied by police.

"Flash mob protests and random attacks on protesters have become less predictable and are expected to continue", it warns. One widely circulated image showed a female protester shot in the eye.

Showcasing the slick design that has characterized the protests, other pamphlets and posters also advertised planned demonstrations as "new tourist spots", handed out airline tickets "to freedom" and advised tourists what to do if they were caught in the protests during their visit.

The vehicles are "one of our options for our use of force or special tactics", he added during the Monday presentation.

Beijing tends toward a broad definition of terrorism, including in it nonviolent protests of government policies on the environment or in minority regions such as Xinjiang and Tibet.

The city's foreign investment promotion agency, InvestHK, boasts that Asia's key markets are "less than four hours away", a big selling point for the 8,000 global companies that have set up sales, operations and research and development centers in Hong Kong.

China is also putting pressure on big companies, such as Cathay Pacific Airways (0293.HK), whose shares tumbled to close to a 10-year low on Monday, after it was told to suspend staff engaged in illegal protests.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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