File Photograph: Hong Kong protestors in June 2019 (Studio Incendo)
An 18-year-old protestor has been shot in the chest by Hong Kong’s security forces after violent protests in the city marked 70 years of Communist party rule in China.
As a military parade took place in Beijing, hundreds of thousands of demonstrators took to the streets of Hong Kong in one of the largest days of protest so far. Chinese flags were burnt and calls for independence were heard throughout the city, as protestors clashed with police.
Video footage captured a policeman shooting a teenage protestor in the chest, an incident which has sparked international condemnation.
Dominic Raab, the British foreign secretary, said that the use of live ammunition by Chinese security forces was “disproportionate, and only risks inflaming the situation”. Amnesty International called the shooting “an alarming development”.
“HK (has) fallen into a de facto police state,” democracy activist Joshua Wong tweeted. “The paramilitary security forces completely took over this city.”
Hong Kong police meanwhile have defended the police officer who fired the shot, stating that the use of live ammunition was “lawful and reasonable”.
The city’s police chief Stephen Lo acknowledged that Tuesday was “one of Hong Kong's most violent and chaotic days", with at least 104 people taken to hospital and 180 arrested.