OPINIONS Observer: Rioters laying down weapons is vital for HK to restore peace

OPINIONS

Observer: Rioters laying down weapons is vital for HK to restore peace

By Qin Chuan | People's Daily app

11:27, December 16, 2019

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Hong Kong's police staged a surprise raid and arrested three males for allegedly testing explosives in Tuen Mun on Saturday. One suspect is believed to be a middle school lab assistant.

In a separate case, employees with the City University of Hong Kong found several containers filled with petrol bombs on Friday and promptly notified the authorities. Police later discovered smoke bombs and flammable substances like nitric acid.

Recently, violence has spread across Hong Kong campuses. It should serve as a warning sign that chemicals and explosives were found in various locations. As reported by the police, had such weapons and bombs been used, they would have severely threatened human life and property.

This wasn't the first time Hong Kong police had seized lethal weapons and hazardous chemicals used by the rioters. In the past months, radical protesters shot arrows at police officers and throwing petrol bombs at a police station and anti-riot vehicles. The protesters upgraded their weapons from bricks and metal poles to petrol bombs and powerful archery bows. The weapons helped rioters escalate their violent and emboldened actions. 

As the saying goes, "a person with a weapon will produce the killing thoughts.” The rioters have shown their brutal side for the past six months.

Had lethal weapons been acquired by rioters, they would have become fearless in confronting the police and hurting innocent people, which would have brought catastrophic consequences to Hong Kong.

It is time to issue harsh warnings to the radicals that violence will no longer be tolerated, and their attempts to turn the city into a battlefield are doomed to fail.

In November, rioters started fires at Hong Kong Polytechnic University and attacked police officers with lethal weapons. Images of burning debris and rubble resembled a warzone and stunned many people. Such turmoil should never be tolerated in the future.

Hong Kong belongs to its residents. It is not a lawless jungle where rioters can do whatever they please and shred harmony into pieces and then escape.

Hong Kong cannot afford to be ripped apart by reckless actions or internal rifts. It's a fact that local businesses have languished, while retail and catering industries have suffered the most due to the prolonged unrest.

It is obvious the rioters are enemies of Hong Kong society and the city will never restore peace overnight if they do not cease their violent tendencies.

If rioters continue to use lethal weapons to carry out attacks against the city, not only would it be difficult to guarantee safety, but their actions would devastate the city's future as well.

Since the rioters became more aggressive, they have trampled the rule of law and social order, while undermining the city's prosperity and stability, and thus challenging the bottom line of the "One Country, Two Systems" principle.

The radicals have continued to push Hong Kong towards the abyss of destruction. Therefore, more effective and stronger measures must be implemented to stop the spread of violence, and increased public participation and supporting voices are also needed to reestablish social order.

Consolidating positive energy based on anti-violence, protecting the rule of law and ensuring stability is the consensus. Stopping the violence and restoring order to society is the will of the majority.

If everyone at all levels of society could unite as one and rise to the challenge in standing up against violence, then the chaos would end and order would be restored. 

(By Ryan Yaoran Yu and Paris Yelu Xu)

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