By Riyaz ul Khaliq
ANKARA (AA) – A protester was critically wounded after Hong Kong police opened fire on protesters in the semi-autonomous region under China’s rule on Tuesday during the ongoing anti-government protests, local media reported.
Demonstrations started early Tuesday while China was marking its National Day.
“A protester has been shot by a live round in Tsuen Wan,” HongKong Free Press reported.
Multiple videos from the protest site showed the 18-year-old victim bleeding profusely in the chest on Hoi Pa Street.
It is the first casualty due to a live bullet ever since mass protests erupted in early June against the Carrie Lam government to legalize the extradition of suspects to mainland China.
The bill to amend the extradition law was finally withdrawn on Sept. 4, but people are still upset and want Lam to meet other demands.
“The protester was given an oxygen mask by paramedics at the scene and later hospitalized at Princess Margaret Hospital. He was filmed conscious for a short period, saying: ‘my chest really hurts’,” the report added.
The daily South China Morning Post reported that a massive "national grief" march was moving from Victoria Park in Causeway Bay to central Hong Kong. The protesters may try to reach Beijing's liaison office in Sai Ying Pun.
Earlier, many protesters were injured and hundreds of others detained during demonstrations.
Police also fired warning shots to disperse the protesters. Two police vans came under attack from demonstrators, visuals from the city showed.
Before the dawn broke, police detained five people after they found black balloons -- apparently released in the morning as a mark of protests against the Lam government -- in a private car and two trucks around 4 a.m. (0800GMT Monday) at a car park on Cheong Tung Road in Hung Hom which were apparently being used for protests.
Later in the morning, marking 70 years of People’s Republic of China, the Lam government held flag-raising ceremony and raised flags of China and Hong Kong alongside each other.