Monday, November 18, 2019

People camped out in Toronto overnight in support of Hong Kong

A group of U of T students launched a hunger strike and camped out outside Old City Hall this past weekend in support of students in Hong Kong. 

The group, called the UofT HK Extradition Law Awareness Group, formed in order to spread awareness about the Anti-Extradition Law Amendment Bill (or Anti-ELAB) movement in Hong Kong.

There have been multiple demonstrations in Toronto in solidarity with Hong Kong, but this was the first to last 12 hours.

Students had originally planned to camp out and undergo a hunger strike for 48 hours, but they were forced to end early because of safety concerns. 

"After 12 hours in below zero weather sometimes reaching -15°C with windchill, on-site first aiders recommended students participating in this weekend's hunger strike to end their fasting," reads a post on their Facebook page. 

"As a result, to ensure all our students' safety, we have decided to end this weekend's hunger strike early."

The group said they collected supplies from "warm-hearted volunteers" in preparation for the hunger strike, and they'll be returning all materials that went unused due to the early end of the strike.

Universities in Hong Kong have recently turned into "battleground[s]" as protests have escalated and become more violent.

The Hong Kong Police Force has used excessive force on citizens and students, while protestors have used petrol bombs, arrows and cars against police. 

The demonstrations originally began in response to a controversial extradition bill that would undermine Hong Kong's autonomy if enacted, but they've now expanded to be more general, anti-government protests.

The Chinese central government has said the protests are the "worst crisis in Hong Kong" since the handover in 1997.


by Mira Miller via blogTO

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