Hong Kong police have arrested three former parliamentarians in connection with incidents in May and June involving a smelly liquid thrown into the Legislative Council.
The protest act would have been intended to injure, the police say.
pro-democratic activists Ted Hui, Ray Chan and Chun Hoi-dick confirm the arrests on Facebook. The arrests took place after opposition members in the Hong Kong parliament left en masse last week.
They did so in protest against the dismissal of four colleagues, in which they see Beijing’s umpteenth attempt to quell pro-democratic sentiments in Hong Kong.
Police say the charges against the three are the result of extensive investigation. The former parliamentarians have been charged with, among other things, trying to inflict injury and mental damage. As long as there is still an investigation, the three are stuck.
Television footage in June showed MPs Eddie Chu and Ray Chan storming forward in the parliament hall when a law was being debated that would criminalize disrespect of the Chinese national anthem.
Chu and Chan then threw a foul-smelling liquid while being tackled by security guards. In May, Ted Hui cast during a session with a rotting plant, can also be seen on images.
The opposition regularly protests against Beijing’s curtailment of the freedoms of the former British Crown Colony, which promised Hong Kong a high degree of autonomy when it returned to China in 1997.
Beijing denies that it restricts Hong Kong’s rights and freedoms, but authorities in Hong Kong and mainland China have become increasingly harsh in protests against the government in recent years.