Tuesday, 11 November 2014

Is it Really the End?

A Yayoi Kusama-esque poster of the protest
Tomorrow might be the beginning of the end of the Umbrella Movement.

The High Court has ruled that police can now arrest protesters who defy bailiffs trying to clear the sites at Admiralty and Mongkok, which may happen as early as tomorrow (Wednesday).

Mr Justice Thomas Au Hing-cheung says this means officers could remove or arrest people who have ignored or insisted on breaching them. However, officers must give a brief explanation of the order at the point of arrest.

Au said he allowed police to do this because the rule of law and due administration of justice were at risk of being "seriously challenged and undermined", as some protesters have been openly disobeying and flouting court orders.

In addition to the police support, the Secretary for Justice Rimsky Yuen Kwok-keung may also "consider taking appropriate action against persons who may have committed the offence of criminal contempt".

Will Totoro leave the protest site as well?!
Two injunctions were first granted on October 20 to clear parts of Nathan Road and clear the entrances and exits at Citic Tower in Admiralty.

However, lawmaker Albert Chan Wai-yip said the court only took into account the plaintiffs' arguments and not those of the protesters. Is anyone going to appeal?

In the meantime how are protesters going to handle themselves if bailiffs do come to try to repossess the streets. Are they gong to put up a resistance and fight? Or are they going to give up peacefully and get dragged into police vans?

During the first few weeks of Occupy, we kept thinking it would end soon, with Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying threatening to clear the streets. But it never happened.

And then most recently with the injunction granted last month, there wasn't much success either. So is this time really the end?

We'll have to find out tomorrow...

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