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Former Secretary for security: ‘Using riot polices is common.’

出自香港新聞網 - 樹仁新傳系學生實習習作

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Using riot polices was a common act of the government but I had never considered asking People’s Liberation Army to maintain social order, former Secretary for Security said yesterday at a Shue Yan Forum.

Chief Executive candidate Henry Tang said Leung Chun-Ying suggested to use riot polices in order to deal with the protesters in administration meetings. It raised social concern and people feared that the freedom of assembly was violated. But Lai Hing Ning said it’s not exaggerated to use riot polices.

“The riot polices would be out on duty when it is needed and actually we often make good use of Police Tactical Unit. Just like what we did during the WTO and the taxi drivers’ strike in the 80’s,” said Lai.

In the 80’s, many taxi drivers were discontented with the government’s policies and decided to go on strike. To control the social order, riot polices turned out for work. Lai said: “The most important thing is that police has to decide using which level of forces in what circumstances. There should be a guideline in using pepper spray and tear gas.”

Although Lai said the government should adopt strong acts in some serious events as they would harm citizens’ safety, he thought using violence to cope with protesters was not an effective method.

“I do not think only violence can effectively control the social order and tackle all incidents during protests. But it’s the front line polices’ job to decide whether they should use PTU or not. It is an immediate decision which made within seconds and do not need to consult the secretary of security,” said Lai.

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