Update August 22, 2019
A brief timeline of the developments surrounding the extradition amendments introduced by the Hong Kong SAR government, which triggered a series of mass demonstrations, including a march of an estimated two million people on June 16, 2019, the largest in Hong Kong’s history.
While on vacation in Taiwan, a Hong Kong man, Chan Tong-kai, 19, strangles his girlfriend, Poon Hiu-wing, 20, also from Hong Kong. Source.
After returning to Hong Kong, Chan Tong-kai is taken into custody by Hong Kong police for theft and money-laundering. During questioning, he admits to killing his girlfriend. Source.
The Security Bureau proposes amending the existing Fugitive Offenders Ordinance (FOO) and the Mutual Legal Assistance in Criminal Matters Ordinance (MLAO) to allow ad hoc extraditions to jurisdictions with which Hong Kong does not have existing rendition arrangements, allowing extradition of criminal suspects from Hong Kong to mainland China, Macau, and Taiwan. Source.
The Civil Human Rights Front (CHRF), comprising dozens of Hong Kong’s pro-democracy groups, calls the first protest against the extradition amendments; thousands march to the government headquarters in Admiralty.
Carrie Lam, Chief Executive of the Hong Kong SAR government, submits the proposed amendments to the Legislative Council (LegCo), citing the murder case.
Various sectors, including the legal and business sectors, immediately voice their concerns over the proposed amendments. The Hong Kong Bar Association issues a set of Observations, listing its concerns.
Hong Kong bookseller Lam Wing-kee flies to Taiwan out of security concerns over the proposed extradition amendments. Lam was abducted from Hong Kong in October 2015 by mainland Chinese security forces. He was returned to Hong Kong in June 2016 after eight months’ detention in mainland China. Source.
In the second protest called by Civil Human Rights Front, more than 100,000 march to the LegCo.
Chan Tong-kai is sentenced to 29 months' imprisonment for money-laundering. With the 13 months he has already spent in custody since his arrest, and a possible one-third sentence reduction for good behavior, he may be released as early as October 2019. Source.
U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo expresses concern that the Hong Kong government’s proposed extradition amendments would “threaten Hong Kong’s rule of law.” Source.
The government, bypassing normal procedure, withdraws the bill from the Bills Committee and schedules a second reading in a full legislative session on June 12. Source.
Chief Executive Carrie Lam says LegCo needs to pass the extradition bill before summer. Source.
Under the direction of Secretary for Security John Lee Ka-chiu, the House Committee, with a pro-Beijing majority, dismisses the Bills Committee.
Secretary for Security John Lee announces measures to limit the scope of extraditable crimes, including raising the threshold for extradition to crimes punishable by seven or more years of imprisonment. Source.
Widening concerns are expressed by various sectors in Hong Kong, including legal, academic, business, diplomatic, and press. Foreign governments and international bodies also raise their concerns. See a select list of those groups and bodies voicing their concerns and opposition here.
Taiwan authorities say they will not seek the extradition of Chan Tong-kai and will not accept extradition arrangements with Hong Kong.
Tuesday, June 4
Annual candlelight vigil to commemorate victims of the 1989 June Fourth massacre is attended by an estimated 180,000 people, in one of the largest crowds in years. Source.
Thursday, June 6
More than 3,000 lawyers clad in black stage a silent march from the Court of Final Appeal to the Central Government Offices to oppose the extradition bill. Source.
Sunday, June 9
Amid heavy police presence, an estimated 1 million Hong Kongers march from Victoria Park to the Legislative Council in Admiralty, to oppose the extradition bill. Crowd control measures included shutting down of some MTR stations and trains skipping stops near LegCo. Source.
Monday, June 10
Chief Executive Carrie Lam issues statement at 11 p.m. confirming that the second reading of the extradition bill in LegCo is set to commence on Wednesday, June 12.
Universities call for class-boycott starting Wednesday. Other sectors call for general strike on Wednesday.
Civil Human Rights Front, together with legislators and political parties, calls for rally to surround LegCo on Wednesday.
LegCo announces police will handle security for the LegCo complex on Wednesday.
Tuesday, June 11
LegCo Chairman Andrew Leung announces timetable for extradition bill consideration and voting: 66 hours for reading and debate to be concluded by 8 p.m., Thursday, June 20, to be followed by voting.
Civil Human Rights Front officially calls for rally starting at 11 a.m. on Wednesday around LegCo.
Various other forms of protest are announced for Wednesday, including strike by Social Workers Union, Artists’ Union, and Teachers’ Union; class-boycott by seven universities; and “drive slow” for Hong Kong Island Bus Service by the Bus Drivers’ Union.
Wednesday, June 12
In tears, Carrie Lam says in a TV interview that she has sacrificed a lot for Hong Kong and that she could not have “sold out Hong Kong,” but in the same interview refers to the protestors as spoiled children, saying “If my son was stubborn and I spoiled him and tolerated his stubborn behavior every time, I would just be going along with him.” (video)
LegCo announces delay of second reading of extradition bill.
Protests continue with thousands of demonstrators gathering in front of the LegCo complex in Admiralty. An estimated 5,000 riot policemen in heavy gear guard the LegCo building. In mid-afternoon, as protesters press toward the police phalanx, some throwing objects, including bricks, policemen fire tear gas, rubber bullets, and beanbag rounds at the protestors. Source.
Elsewhere, excessive police force against protesters and journalists is widely reported and documented in video footage. Incidences include:
News reports cite police use of tear gas on June 12 as greater than that used during the 79 days of the Occupy protest in 2014.
In the afternoon, Police Commissioner Stephen Lo declares clashes between protesters and police a “riot,” justifying the violent response, and calls on the protesters to go home. Source.
The Hong Kong Hospital Authority reports that 22 people were taken to public hospitals by Wednesday evening, but later reports that at least 72 people have been injured, two in serious condition. Source.
Civil Human Rights Front calls for rally on Sunday, June 16, and for schools and shops to strike on Monday, June 17.
Thursday, June 13
LegCo announces cancellation of second reading of extradition bill. No announcement on voting date. Source.
A canteen manager of Police Headquarters in Wanchai quits, paying back one month’s salary in lieu of advanced notice. His resignation letter reads: “I refuse to serve evils.” He later says in an interview: “It’s as if I am supplying [the policemen] with food and drinks that give them the strength go to out and beat up people—I can no longer accept this work.” Source.
Friday, June 14
Reuters reports that some Hong Kong tycoons are starting to move personal wealth offshore as fears rise over the extradition bill. Source.
Pro-establishment LegCo member Michael Tien calls for delay of extradition bill and says in a radio interview that the conflict between the police and demonstrators has forced a rethink of the government’s plan. Source.
6,000 mothers dressed in black stage a sit-in in Charter Garden holding signs saying “Don’t shoot our children.” A petition with 44,000 signatures objects to Lam’s claim of acting like a “good mother.” Source.
The Chinese Foreign Minister Lu Yucheng summons the deputy chief of mission at the U.S. Embassy in Beijing, Robert Forden, to complain about Washington’s comment about the extradition bill. A statement by the Foreign Ministry says: “China called on the United States . . . to immediately stop all interference in Hong Kong’s affairs and stop taking action that would affect the prosperity and stability of Hong Kong.” Source.
Carrie Lam meets with Chinese Vice Premier Han Zheng in Shenzhen to review the situation. Source.
Saturday, June 15
In a speech, Carrie Lam announces suspension of “current legislative exercise” on extradition bill, but not its withdrawal, arguing that withdrawing the bill would mean that it is groundless. Lam expresses “sorrow and regret” that she failed to convince the public that the bill was needed. Source.
In official statements, the mainland Chinese government says that it supports Lam’s decision to suspend the bill. Source.
The shelving of the bill does not appear to quell public anger. Claudia Mo, a democratic lawmaker, says, “Postponement is temporary. It’s just delaying the pain.” Source.
Hunger striker Minnie Li, a Shanghai born activist and lecturer at the Education University of Hong Kong, is hospitalized for fever and low blood sugar. Source.
A 35-year old protester, after hanging a banner from a Pacific Place building in the Admiralty district calling for the withdrawal of the extradition bill, falls to his death. Police declare it a suicide. Source.
Sunday, June 16
In the largest march in Hong Kong’s history, an estimated 2 million people—roughly one in four Hong Kongers—march from Victoria Park to the Legislative Council in Admiralty in continued protest against the extradition bill. The greatest concentration of protesters is in Admiralty, Harcourt Road, Hennessey Road, Causeway Bay, and Wan Chai. Most of the marchers wear black, to commemorate the protester who fell to his death the day before. Source.
Demands reflected in chants and placards include:
Protesters make way for ambulances in a dramatic scene. (Video)
In a written statement, Chief Executive Carrie Lam:
Hong Kong pro-democracy activist Joshua Wong is released from prison after serving one month of a two-month prison term for contempt of court related to the 2014 Umbrella Movement. He joins the protests and calls for the resignation of Carrie Lam. Source.
Monday, June 17
The Hong Kong police reverses its earlier characterization of the June 12 clashes between protesters and the police as a “riot.” Police Commissioner Stephen Lo Wai-chung says that only those who threw bricks and wielded metal poles against officers outside of LegCo would be accused of violating anti-rioting laws. “Others who have participated in the same public order event but have not engaged in any violent act need not to worry in committing rioting offences,” Lo says. Source.
Following the June 13 arrest of two protesters at Queen Elizabeth Hospital after they received treatment for injuries sustained on June 12, Pierre Chan, the medical sector LegCo member, states he has proof that the Hospital Authority allows police unhindered access to its system to get information on injured protesters. The Authority denies providing information of patients from the June 12 protests to the police. Source.
Tuesday, June 18
Chief Executive Carrie Lam apologizes in second press conference saying she “personally has to shoulder much of the responsibility,” but refuses to resign. Source.
In a joint declaration, protesters put forth four demands and set a deadline of 5 p.m. on June 20, for Carrie Lam to respond:
Wednesday, June 19
In a speech at LegCo, Secretary for Security John Lee apologizes for “causing social disputes and anxiety” but defends police’s use of tear gas and pepper spray against protesters on June 12 when dozens of people were injured and 32 people were arrested. He is criticized by pro-democracy lawmakers, including Charles Mok, who says, “Everything you have said today is polarizing the people. . . . You are the one that’s heating things up right now.” Source.
Thursday, June 20
Six student unions plan escalation-of-protest actions if the government does not respond to their demands by 5 p.m. They are student unions of the Chinese University of Hong Kong, University of Science and Technology, Education University, City University, Academy for Performing Arts, Hang Seng University and the Federation of Students. The deadline set by protesters is ignored. Source.
Friday, June 21
Thousands of protesters stage a sit-in outside the LegCo building, block lanes of Harcourt Road, and barricade the entrance to the Police Headquarters. One protest sign on the outside wall of the Police Headquarters reads: “We will never submit.” Source.
Saturday, June 22
Hong Kong’s Secretary for Justice Theresa Cheng rejects protesters’ demands to not charge people who took part in the protests on June 12, saying that any charges pressed by the Department of Justice are “based on the law, relevant facts and (our) prosecution rules.” Source.
Sunday, June 23
Civil Human Rights Front organizes a rally outside LegCo demanding accountability of police for abuse of power, with a focus on disproportionate violence against protestors.
In a joint letter, 32 former government officials and politicians, including Anson Chan and Martin Lee, appeal to Carrie Lam to:
Starry Lee, chairwoman of the pro-establishment party in LegCo, the Democratic Alliance for the Betterment and Progress of Hong Kong (DAB), says the party “would not oppose” a full withdrawal of the extradition bill. Source.
Monday, June 24
Over 100 protestors gather outside and in the foyer of the Revenue Tower in Wan Chai, blocking entry into the building but allowing some employees to leave, in another wave of civil disobedience action. Source.
In her oral update at the 1st Meeting of the 41st Regular Session of the Human Rights Council, Michelle Bachelet, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, commends the decision of the Hong Kong authorities to delay passage of the extradition bill, “in response to the massive display of civic activism by a large proportion of the population,” but “encourage[s] the authorities to consult broadly before passing or amending this, or any other, legislation.” Source.
Wednesday, June 26
In advance of the G20 summit in Osaka (June 28-29) where China has said it “will not allow” discussion of Hong Kong’s extradition bill, protesters delivered a petition to 16 foreign consulates to urge them to “Back HK up at G20 Summit by Supporting: 1) Full Withdrawal of Extradition Bill, 2) Establishment of Investigation Committee on Police Brutality.” 1,500 protestors march to the U.S. and British consulates and EU’s representative office to deliver the petition; the protestors then split into three groups to go to the following consulates: Germany, South Korea, Argentina, Japan, Australia, Austria, Mexico, France, Italy, Canada, Brazil, Russia, Indonesia, and India. The last three consulates in this list did not accept the petition. Source 1. Source 2.
Thursday, June 27
Nine members of the Committee on Human Rights and Humanitarian Aid of the German parliament issue a statement to support Hong Kong’s people and urge German Chancellor Angela Merkel to bring up Hong Kong's autonomy at the G20 Osaka Summit. Excerpts from "The autonomy of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region cannot be compromised” (Die Autonomie der Sonderverwaltungszone Hongkong ist nicht verhandelbar):
“As members of the Human Rights Committee of the German Bundestag, we stand shoulder to shoulder with the demonstrators in Hong Kong who share our values of civil liberty, democracy and the rule of law. . . . We appeal to the Hong Kong Government not only to suspend the controversial legislative changes, but to formally withdraw [the bill] . . . . We urge German Chancellor Angela Merkel to stress in an upcoming discussion with Xi Jinping at the G20 summit that the autonomy of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region must not be compromised and that the principle of "one country, two systems" must be fully respected.”
On eve of the G20 Osaka Summit, dozens demonstrate in downtown Osaka in solidarity with Hong Kong’s anti-extradition protest. Source.
Friday, June 28
On June 27 and 28, crowdfunded full-page ads headlined “Stand With Hong Kong at G20” are published in 17 newspapers in at least 12 different countries, including the New York Times (U.S. and international), Guardian (U.K.), Asahi Shimbun (Japan), Süddeutsche Zeitung (Germany), Chosun Ilbo (South Korea), and Apple Daily (Taiwan).
Saturday, June 29
A 21-year-old student, Lo Hiu-yan, jumps to her death from a building in Ka Fuk Estate in Fanling. She leaves a message to fellow protesters written in red ink on a wall in which she reiterates the protesters’ demands and urges the protesters to persevere. Source.
The Civil Human Rights Front (CHRF) secretariat issues an open letter to Carrie Lam, urging her to respond to the protesters’ demands. Source.
G20 ad-campaign officially concludes with 20 newspapers running ads. Source.
Sunday, June 30
A pro-police rally is held in Tamar Park with between 53,000 (police estimate) and 165,000 (organizers estimate) people participating. Legislator Lam Cheuk Ting (Democratic Party) is attacked and beaten by police supporters attending the rally. Reporters and journalists covering the rally are reportedly assaulted. Source.
Pro-police protesters tear down signs, banners, and post-it notes at the Lennon Wall. Some also tear down the memorial for Marco Leung, the protester who fell to his death on June 15. Source.
A 29-year-old woman, Zhita Wu, jumps from a walkway of the IFC building in Central onto Man Cheung Street at 3 p.m. She is pronounced dead at 9 p.m. Wu left a message on her social media account supporting the protesters. Source.
Commemorative activities are held at the two sites of the suicide deaths, and the makeshift memorial at the Lennon Wall is reestablished.
Monday, July 1
In her first public appearance since June 18, Carrie Lam delivers remarks at a ceremony marking the 22nd anniversary of Hong Kong’s return to China and acknowledges: “What happened in recent months has caused dilemmas and divides between the government and citizens. It has made me understand that as a politician, I must remind myself I have to accurately get the pulse of the society. I have learned that even with good intentions, I have to be open and inclusive.” Source.
The annual flag-raising ceremony is moved indoors to the Wanchai Exhibition Center. Guests watch a live broadcast of the flag raising outside in Bauhinia Square. Source.
Protesters occupy the roads around LegCo before dawn, raising a black flag in place of the PRC flag, and lowering the Hong Kong flag to half-mast to commemorate those lost. Outside LegCo, riot police use pepper spray and batons against protesters. Several protestors are injured and 13 police officers are sent to the hospital after being splashed with an unidentified liquid. Source.
In the early afternoon at LegCo, protestors use metal trollies and metal bars to ram a glass panel next to the legislators’ entrance. Democratic Party lawmaker Roy Kwong, other opposition legislators, and other protestors attempt to persuade these protestors to cease the ramming. Pan-democratic legislator Leung Yiu-chung is tackled to the ground while trying to stop protesters from breaking into LegCo. Source.
The police try to persuade the Civil Human Rights Front (CHRF) to postpone or reroute the annual July 1 march, and official permission is withdrawn for Admiralty to be the march destination. CHRF refuses to postpone the march, and it begins in the early afternoon from Causeway Bay toward Central, a contingent destination in light of activities at LegCo. Source. Organizers say 550,000 take part in the march, and the police put the figure at 190,000. Source.
At 6:26 p.m., LegCo issues a red security alert for the first time in history, and the building is evacuated. Shortly after, the government issues a statement saying it “strongly condemns and deeply regrets the extremely violent acts committed by some protesters, ” and that “the police will take appropriate enforcement action to protect public order and safety.” Source.
After a long standoff, the police retreat from their posts guarding the entrance to the LegCo building. After smashing through the glass door, hundreds of protesters rush into building at around 9 p.m. The police appear to have evacuated the building. Once inside, a small group of protestors spray paint the walls with graffiti, including messages such as “Carrie Lam step down,” “The government forced us to revolt,” “It was you who taught us that peaceful protest is useless,” “There are no rioters, only tyranny,” and “Oppose Chinese colonialism.” Pictures of Legislative Council President Andrew Leung and former president Rita Fan are defaced, the Hong Kong official emblem is partially covered in black paint, and a British colonial flag is draped over the podium of the LegCo president. A protester destroys a copy of the Basic Law. Source & Source. However, protesters protect items of historic value, books, and personal property in the building. Source.
At around 10 p.m., the police release a video on Facebook announcing a deadline of midnight for the protestors to leave the building. Source. Protesters on-site and within LegCo begin discussions on whether to stay or withdraw.
Just before midnight, a few protestors read a declaration addressed to Hong Kong citizens explaining the decision to enter LegCo: “Since June, Hong Kongers have protested numerous times, including a march of 2 million, urging the government to withdraw the bill. The government refused to listen to the people. . . . The current Hong Kong government is no longer what the Hong Kong people are wishing for. . . . We hope Hong Kong can unite against the vicious laws and the suppressive regime, and safeguard Hong Kong together.” Source. The protesters move out of the LegCo building chanting “We leave together!”
Tuesday, July 2
Shortly after midnight, riot police enter the building. No protesters remain inside. Outside, protestors retreat from a baton charge by riot police. Source. Police begin firing rounds of tear gas, forcing the remaining protesters out of the Admiralty area. The police clear roadblocks and continue to fire tear gas at retreating protesters, who throw bricks, eggs, and umbrellas. By 1 a.m., all the protesters have left the area around LegCo. Source.
The police stop and search passengers of minibuses and cars leaving Central, searching the belongings of those wearing black, requiring them to remove their masks, and videotaping their faces. Source.
Chief Executive Carrie Lam, Secretary for Administration Matthew Cheung, Secretary for Security John Lee, and Police Chief Stephen Lo hold a press conference at 4 a.m. Lam condemns “extreme violence” by protesters, saying, “I can say here, whether it’s pan-democratic lawmakers or groups of young people, in future days, I am very willing to communicate about the matters they care about.” Source. Asked why she would not meet with pro-democracy legislators earlier, she replied, “With this level of violence . . . I’m sure the public will understand that going to the scene for dialogue was of no help.” Reporters question her lack of response to the three suicides, but she gives no specific response. Source. The Hong Kong Journalists Association (HKJA) question why questions related to the suicides were deleted from the official transcript of the press meeting. Source.
Independent Police Complaints Commission confirms receipt of over 100 complaints relating to anti-extradition protests since early June and that it will begin investigation. Chairperson Anthony Neoh clarifies that any information or potential evidence of criminal conduct, including that of protestors, will be handed to police. Source.
Wednesday, July 3
A 28-year-old woman, surnamed Mak, jumps to her death at her residence in Cheung Sha Wan, leaving a suicide note in support of the anti-extradition protests. This marks the fourth suicide related to the protests. Despite concerns about "copycats," her family members and close friends agree to share her message with media, and state that it is the government’s responsibility to put a stop to the young people’s despair. Source 1, source 2.
Arrests of protesters begin. Twelve are arrested for activities at the LegCo area on July 1 (unrelated to the break-in), the youngest of them aged 14. Eight more are arrested for "cyberbullying" police officers and releasing police officers' personal information online. Source 1, Source 2.
Thursday, July 4
Carrie Lam and Executive Council members reach out in secret to the student unions of Hong Kong University of Science and Technology and Chinese University of Hong Kong, inviting student leaders to attend a closed-door meeting. The student unions decline the invitations. In a joint press conference, student unions of all universities criticize the invitation as a "publicity stunt" and demand two conditions for any meeting to take place: 1) exoneration of all protesters facing charges and 2) that any meeting be in public. Source 1, Source 2.
Pastor Lau Chi-Hung and fellow activists commence a 50-hour hunger strike outside government offices in Admiralty in support of protesters. Source.
Friday, July 5
More than 800 Hong Kong mothers attend a rally at Edinburgh Place in support of young protesters, reiterating that their children are not rioters, urging the government to respect human lives, and calling on fellow Hong Kong citizens to support the movement. Source.
Sunday, July 7
More than 230,000 march in Kowloon, aimed at spreading messages of the anti-extradition movement to mainland Chinese tourists arriving in the Tsim Sha Tsui area as well as the High-Speed Rail station near Austin. Source.
Afterwards, protesters march along Nathan Road from Tsim Sha Tsui to Mong Kok, occupying the streets and stopping traffic. Legislators on site attempt to negotiate as protesters are trapped by barricades set up by police, which impede joining the procession as well as leaving the march (to comply with police demand to evacuate the area). When protesters attempt to slowly and gradually retreat, they are violently dispersed by police officers, equipped with shields, batons, and pepper spray who target protesters, journalists, and passers-by.
Live-streams and reports show that identification numbers on police officers’ badges are covered up. The Hong Kong Journalists Association criticizes the police for assaulting journalists on-site and causing undue obstruction to press activities. Six are arrested over the clashes. Source 1, Source 2, Source 3.
Tuesday, July 9
“Lennon Walls,” colorful collages of Post-it notes on wall, appear throughout all districts of the city in support of the protestors, with slogans such as “add oil Hongkonger” and “No China extradition.” First appearing during the Umbrella Movement in 2014, the message walls take inspiration from the Lennon Wall in Prague. Source.
Wednesday, July 10
200 police officers remove messages with personal details of police from a “Lennon Wall” in a pedestrian underpass near Tai Po MTR station. Source.
Saturday, July 13
An estimated 30,000 protestors (4,000 estimated by the police) march in Sheng Shui from North Sports Ground passing along eight streets against parallel traders (mainlanders crossing the border to purchase goods in Hong Kong to sell on the mainland). A similar march, to “Reclaim Shengshui,” was first held in 2012. Source.
After the march, protestors clash with the police when a bridge near the MTR station was clogged with people. Reportedly, one protestor panics when targeted by the police and tries to jump off the bridge but is stopped by a photojournalist and police officers. Protestors defend themselves with umbrellas against batons and pepper spray used by the police. Source.
Sunday, July 14
An estimated 11,500 protesters take to the street in Shatin shouting slogans like “The police knowingly broke the law” and “Fight on, Hong Kong.” Hundreds of protestors retreat into New Town Plaza shopping mall when the police start clearing the streets. At around 9 p.m., riot police inside the shopping mall use batons and pepper spray against the protestors. More than 40 people are arrested and 22 people injured. Police commissioner Stephen Lo defends the deployment of riot police blaming the protestors for the violence and says 10 police officers were injured. Source 1, Source 2.
Monday, July 15
Carrie Lam visits injured police officers from the weekend clashes at a hospital in Taipo and condemns the “violent protestors” as “rioters.” Source.
24 pro-democracy lawmakers issue a joint statement criticizing the police for “deliberately provoking conflict between protesters and police” and to demand that the police commissioner explain the incident, discipline the commanders and officers involved in the violence, and apologize to affected businesses and members of the public. Source.
Saturday, July 20
The police state that they have arrested a man suspected of possessing explosives after finding cache of weapons and explosives, including petrol bombs, knives, corrosive acid, and 2kg of triacetone triperoxide
The police bar a planned Sunday protest from ending in Admiralty and Court of Final Appeal in Central, citing safety concerns related to explosives discovery in their decision that the protest end in Wan Chai. Source.
Sunday, July 21
430,000 protestors march in Wan Chai beginning Sunday afternoon calling for an independent inquiry into the excessive use of force by the police against anti-extradition demonstrators. The protests now focus on four demands: 1) complete withdrawal of the extradition bill, 2) retraction of “riot” characterization of June 12 protests, 3) unconditional release of arrested protestors, and 4) universal suffrage. Despite police urging that protestors leave after reaching Wan Chai, the march continue toward Admiralty. Source.
Hundreds of protesters surround Beijing’s liaison office and deface the building and a PRC national emblem. Source. Shortly after 8 p.m., riot police move towards the liaison office and remove road barriers placed by protestors. Groups of protestors flee but others charge forward. The police fire tear gas and shoot rubber bullets into the crowds during subsequent scuffles with protestors. Source.
A few hours after the end of the Wan Chai protests, violence erupts at the Yuen Long MTR station, in western New Territories, where hundreds wearing masks and white t-shirts, believed to be triad members, begin attacking people indiscriminately with sticks and other weapons. A total of 45 people are injured, including local resident s, and journalists and protestors, as well as Democratic Party lawmaker Lam Chuek-ting. Source 1. Source 2. Source 3.
Police take 35 minutes after first reports to arrive at the scene. Mall officials at Yoho Mall, next to the MTR station say that they tried calling the police but could not get through. Source.
Pro-Beijing lawmaker Junius Ho is videotaped around 10 p.m. in Yuen Long applauding men dressed in white t-shirts and declaring: “all of you are my heroes.”
Monday, July 22
Junius Ho admits meeting with attackers in white t-shirtsand that some of them are his friends. Source. Pro-democracy lawmakers note that during the Yuen Long violence the day before, reporting hotlines did not work and the local police station was closed. In a joint statement, Pro-democracy lawmakers denounce police as “colluding” with triads and “condoning” the attacks. They call on Police Commissioner Stephen Lo to resign and for an independent inquiry into the incident. Source. Senior leaders, including ex-ministers and former allies of Carrie Lam, call for the administration to initiate an independent inquiry into clashes between police and protesters. Source.
Tuesday, July 23
Police arrest six men on suspicion of “unlawful assembly” following violent attacks in Yuen Long. Several of the arrested men have triad backgrounds. Source.
24 pro-democracy lawmakers issue a joint statement denouncing the police for “colluding” with triads and “condoning” the attacks in Yuen Long. Source.
Dozens of masked protesters vandalize pro-Beijing lawmaker Junius Ho’s office in Tsuen Wan. They smash glass panels and spray graffiti, criticizing him for praising Yuen Long attackers the night before. Source.
Wednesday, July 24
Dozens of masked protesters bring trains to a halt during morning rush hour in an act of civil disobedience against the MTR Corporation, causing overcrowding on the platform and disruption of Island Line services. Source.
Over 300 mid-level civil servants issue a joint-letter criticizing Carrie Lam's administration as well as police handling of the anti-extradition protests. Source.
34 former senior officials and legislators launch a second petition urging an independent commission of inquiry into political decision-making and police-protester clashes. Source.
Pro-democracy lawmaker Eddie Chu calls for a full investigation into Junius Ho's involvement in the attacks in Yuen Long. Source .
Pro-democracy lawmaker Andrew Wan from the New Territories files complaint with Independent Commission Against Corruption, alleging misconduct by the Yuen Long district regional commander in relation to July 21 Yuen Long attacks. Source.
A spokesperson for China’s defense ministry condemns Hong Kong’s anti-government protests and reiterates that Hong Kong can call upon Chinese military personnel stationed in the city to intervene if necessary. Source.
Max Chung, a Hong Kong resident, submits application to the police to hold a march in Yuen Long on July 27 to protest the violent attacks on July 21. Source.
Thursday, July 25
The police reject Max Chung’s application and say a protest in Yuen Long could increase the likelihood of further violence, referring to 13 letters from Yuen Long district leaders and 1,700 letters from members of the public who are worried for their safety. Max Chung says he will still walk the route as scheduled. Source.
Friday, July 26
The police confirm and defend their use of 55 cans of tear gas, 24 sponge grenades, and 5 rubber bullets to clear crowds in Sheung Wan during the July 21 protest. Reports confirm this was the first time in Hong Kong’s history that the police have used sponge grenades as riot control weapons. Source.
Approximately 15,000 protesters including flight attendants and airport staff stage an 11-hour protest in an attempt to hold the government accountable for violent attacks on Yuen Long residents in the prior week. Protesters make a small airport Lennon Wall, collect more than 14,600 signatures in support of their demands, and distribute leaflets. They sit on the ground chanting, “Free Hong Kong” as travelers walk through the terminal. Source 1. Source 2.
Saturday, July 27
Approximately 288,000 people attend a protest in Yuen Long according to organizer Max Chung, despite protest application’s rejection by police. Source.
Sunday, July 28
Max Chung is arrested for “organizing an unlawful assembly” on July 27. 13 others are arrested in connection with the march on charges including unauthorized assembly, possession of offensive weapons, and common assault. Source.
16 people are injured and 49 arrested as a result of clashes between protestors and police in Sheung Wan. Source.
Tuesday, July 30
Four protesters charged with possession of offensive weapons at the July 27 Yuen Long protest are denied bail by the Fanling Magistrates’ Court, and their cases are remanded until September 3. Source.
Wednesday, July 31
44 protesters charged with rioting on July 28 are released on bail, on the condition that they report to the police each week. The rioting charge carries a maximum prison sentence of 10 years under the Public Order Ordinance. Source.
Thursday, August 1:
Hong Kong police reject the application for a pro-democracy protest planned for Saturday, August 3, in Mong Kok, and tell organizers that protestors can gather in a playground instead. Source.
The Law Society calls for an independent inquiry into the recent political crisis, and the president of Baptist University calls for a “truth commission,” becoming the the third university chief to make a statement. Source.
The police arrest pro-independence Hong Kong National Party founder Andy Chan and seven others on charges of possession of an offensive weapon and possession of explosives without a license after a raid on a warehouse. Hundreds of people gather at Sha Tin and later Ma On Shan police stations in protest. Source 1. Source 2.
Friday, August 2:
In the first of four days of planned consecutive mass protests, thousands of civil servants go on strike despite warnings by the Secretary of Administration and other civil servant organizations that civil servants must remain "politically neutral" and in support of government. Police deploy tear gas and fire pepper ball rounds without warning. Source 1. Source 2. Source 3.
Police announce seven more arrests on charges of unlawful assembly, in connection with the July 21 Yuen Long attacks. Source.
Saturday, August 3:
Standoffs and clashes between the police and protesters occur in several locations throughout the city, including Mong Kok, Tsim Sha Tsui and Wang Tai Sin. Protestors besiege and vandalize police stations and defend themselves from police with umbrellas and barricades fashioned from road blocks, while police fire teargas and pepper spray and pin down protestors.
A peaceful protest attended by thousands of people in Mong Kok deviates from the approved route: protestors walk to Tsim Sha Tsui, taking over main roads in Kowloon, and later on leave blockades at the entrance of the cross-harbor tunnel.
Photos show police subduing demonstrators and demonstrators bleeding outside a police station in Mong Kok. Police release a statement saying protesters had hurled bricks into the station and set fire to objects nearby.
Protests spread to Wang Tai Sin as local residents confront police until late at night, demanding they release other protesters believed held at a nearby police station. Source.
Protestors are seen throwing a Chinese flag from a pier outside Harbour City into the sea. Former Hong Kong Chief Executive CY Leung offers a reward of HK$1 million for useful information leading to the prosecution of the persons removing the flag, and a government spokesman condemns protesters for “challenging national sovereignty”. Source 1. Source 2.
90,000 people, according to the pro-establishment organizers, or 26,000 people, according to the police, attend a rally in support of the police and the government in Victoria Park under the theme “a hopeful tomorrow.” Source.
Sunday, August 4:
Simultaneous marches occur in Tseung Kwan O and Western Hong Kong. Source.
A spokesperson from the central government condemns the protesters for “violating” the national flag laws of the PRC and Hong Kong and offending state and national dignity. Source.
Police announce the arrest of 20 people during Saturday’s protest clashes for offences including assault and unlawful assembly. Source.
Monday, August 5:
Workers from 20 business sectors strike in the biggest general strike in decades. The Confederation of Trade Unions estimates that 350,000 people take part. Strikers include teachers, lifeguards, security guards, construction workers, and engineers. Subway lines, buses and roads are suspended and blocked. More than 2300 aviation workers join strike, 224 flights are cancelled.
At 10 a.m., Carrie Lam holds her first press conference in two weeks, and blames protesters for disrupting the workday, harming the economy, and harboring ulterior motives of revolution.
Hundreds of thousands of protesters and workers on strike attend simultaneous rallies in seven districts in the afternoon. Two cars drive through barricades in Yuen Long and Sha Tin.
Police begin shooting tear gas in Admiralty at 5 p.m. Protestors in helmets, goggles, and gas-masks run towards the tear gas, extinguishing it with traffic cones and bottles of water. Riot police shoot tear gas from rooftops. Clashes spread throughout various districts as marchers and neighborhood residents rally to protest against recent behavior of police officers.
In Sham Shui Po, police fired tear gas at residents who say they weren’t protesting.
In Tsuen Wan, a mob attacks protesters and passersby with knives.
In Wan Chai, protesters throw Molotov cocktails at the police headquarters.
Hong Kong police say they have arrested over 500 people and fired 1000 rounds of tear gas and 160 rubber bullets since June 9. The police fire nearly 1000 rounds of ammunition—tear gas, rubber bullets, and sponge-tipped rounds—on Monday alone. Source 1. Source 2. Source 3. Source 4. Source 5.
Tuesday, August 6:
In a press briefing, the Hong Kong and Macao Affairs Office of the State Council in Beijing issues its strongest warning yet to Hong Kong protesters. A government spokesperson says, “Those who play with fire will perish by it…. Don D who play with fire will perish by it State Councille/3021703/polic. . . . . Don . . play with fire will firm resolve and immense strength of the central government.” Source.
12,000 Chinese police officers stage an anti-riot drill in Shenzhen, directly across the border from Hong Kong, with police facing “protesters” dressed in construction hats and facemasks. Shenzhen police issue an online statement saying “All police forces in Shenzhen are always ready!” but claim the drills are public security measures in preparation for the PRC’s 70th anniversary celebrations. Source.
Baptist University student union president Keith Fong is arrested for ‘possession of offensive weapons’ after buying 10 laser pointers. The student union secretary alleges the police use excessive force in the arrest. Hundreds of protesters surround the Sham Shui Po police station and nearby roads in support of Fong. The police use tear gas to disperse the crowd, and arrest at least 6 people. Source.
Wednesday, August 7:
Around 3,000 lawyers and legal sector professionals march from the Court of Final Appeal to the Department of Justice at midday. In this second “lawyers’ march,” the protesters wear black and march in silence. They call upon justice secretary Teresa Cheng to address allegations of politically-motivated prosecutions. Source 1. Source 2.
In response to Keith Fong’s arrest, over 1,000 people shone lasers on the side of the Hong Kong Space Museum in Tsim Sha Tsui during the regular nightly laser show.
Thursday, August 8:
Hong Kong Baptist University Student Union president Keith Fong is released from jail and taken to the hospital. Source.
Friday, August 9:
The Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC) issues a warning to Cathay Pacific, in response to a Cathay pilot’s earlier arrest during a protest. Staff who had taken part in “illegal protests,” “violent actions,” and “radical activities,” will not be allowed to fly in and out of the mainland; Cathay must submit identification details of all crew using mainland airspace; and crew lists must be approved by CAAC for flights to use Chinese airspace. Source.
Saturday, August 10:
Several hundred families march in a permitted pro-democracy rally to “guard [Hong Kong] children’s future.” Source.
Day Two of a three-day peaceful sit-in demonstration continues at Hong Kong International Airport. Source.
Sunday, August 11:
Day Three of a three-day peaceful sit-in demonstration continues at Hong Kong International Airport. Source.
Protestors march from Victoria Park, and deviate from the police-authorized route. Police officers charge and fire tear gas at groups of protestors in Wan Chai, Sham Shui Po, Cheung Sha Wan, and Tsim Sha Tsui. Source 1. Source 2.
Undercover officers disguise themselves as protesters to infiltrate a crowd in Causeway Bay and arrest at least a dozen people. Photos show one protester’s face being pushed by an officer’s knee into a pool of his blood as he is arrested. Source 1. Source 2. Source 3.
Police officers fire tear gas inside Kwai Fong MTR station, a confined space. Source.
Police fire pepper balls at protesters at close range at Tai Koo MTR station, and beat with batons and push protesters an escalator. Source.
A young woman is shot in the eye, reportedly through her goggles, with a bean bag round at close range by police in Tsim Sha Tsui and suffers a ruptured eyeball and maxilla fracture. Source 1. Source 2 Source 3.
A police officer is burned on the legs after being hit by a petrol bomb inside Tsim Sha Tsui police station. Source.
Three lawyers file a complaint alleging police deliberately denied them their right to see their clients. Source.
Monday, August 12:
More than 5,000 protestors fill Hong Kong International Airport’s arrivals hall. Many wear eye patches in solidarity with the woman injured by police on August 11. Source.
Airport authorities suspend all flights for the rest of the day and evacuate Hong Kong International Airport. Source.
Medical professionals wear helmets and eyepatches to protest police violence. Source.
Hong Kong police invite journalists to a demonstration of new water-cannon anti-riot vehicles. Source.
The Global Times reports that People’s Armed Police armored personnel carriers have been assembling in Shenzhen over the weekend “in advance of apparent large-scale exercises.” Source.
At a press briefing, China’s Hong Kong and Macao Affairs Office spokesperson says “the first signs of terrorism” are emerging in Hong Kong’s protests. Source.
Cathay Pacific warns its staff they could be subject to disciplinary measures or fired for supporting or participating in “illegal protests.” Source.
Tuesday, August 13
The office of the U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights issues a statement urging the Hong Kong government to act with restraint towards protesters and to immediately investigate incidents of police use of weapons, including tear gas, that may be in violation of international norms and standards. Source.
Flights resume at Hong Kong International Airport in the morning. By afternoon, thousands of protesters occupy the airport for a second day, causing all remaining flights to be cancelled. Source.
Protesters seize two men: one they claim is an undercover mainland Chinese agent, and the other a Global Times reporter. Police come to free the two held men and to disperse the crowd with pepper spray and batons. A protestor takes the baton from an officer and is caught on footage attacking the officer, who then pulls out a gun. Source.
Chinese state media refers to Hong Kong protesters as “mobsters.” Source.
More than 1,000 doctors, nurses, and other health care workers from 13 public hospitals stage lunch-hour sit-ins to protest and condemn excessive use of force by police. Source.
Carrie Lam defends police against accusations of excessive use of force in a press conference. Source.
Wednesday, August 14
Most flights operate without disruption. The Airport Authority posts a formal notice of an interim court order, issued late Tuesday night, prohibiting inciting, aiding, and abetting unlawful and wilful obstruction of proper use of the airport. Protesters are prohibited from entering the departure hall and all but two designated sections of the arrivals hall. Source.
Protesters issue apologies for the disruption and clashes at the airport during previous nights. Source.
Riot police fire tear gas at protesters pointing laser beams at Sham Shui Po police station after the protesters do not heed verbal warnings to stop. Riot police disperse and subdue protesters gathered outside Tin Shui Wai police station. Source.
Thursday, August 15
Over 350 government workers and civil servants launch a second petition condemning police use of force against protesters, and warn of a strike if there is no dialogue or concession. Source.
The police deny permission to the Civil Human Rights Front to hold a planned rally for the first time, scheduled to be on Sunday, August 18. Source.
Friday, August 16
Cathay Pacific CEO Rupert Hogg resigns over the airline’s handling of issues related to the Hong Kong protests. CCTV announces the resignation. Source.
Saturday, August 17
People’s Daily posts a video of the People’s Armed Police conducting mock clashes with protesters in Shenzhen. Source.
Protesters march and rally in London, Toronto, Sydney, Melbourne, New York, and other cities in support of the Hong Kong protests. Source.
Three separate rallies take place in Hong Kong, including one in which thousands of teachers participate. Source.
Sunday, August 18
1.7 million people, according to organizers (and 128,000 protesters, according to police) peacefully assemble in Victoria Park and march to the government headquarters in Admiralty. Source.
Tuesday, August 20, 2019
In early morning, a knife-wielding Hong Kong resident attacks three people who are posting messages on the Tseung Kwan O Lennon Wall. Hong Kong police apprehend him as he tries to enter mainland China at Lo Wu in the afternoon. Source.
In press conference, Carrie Lam promises to set up a platform for dialogue, and says the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) fact-finding study commenced on July 4 will expand its scope and seek help from overseas experts. She refuses to withdraw the extradition bill and offers no concession to protesters’ five demands. Source.
IPCC head Anthony Neoh says he is not against a judge-lead independent inquiry into police handling of the protests, one of the five demands of the protesters, but that this inquiry should focus on ways to improve police operations and address social problems facing youth, instead of delving into individual police officers’ culpability. Source.
2019 Anti-Extradition Protests
2014 Occupy Movement