Hong Kong, (IANS/EFE) Student demonstrators have decided to step up their street protests and are planning to eventually take over and occupy government offices, leaders of the Hong Kong Federation of Students said Tuesday.
“We will increase the intensity of protests starting as of this Thursday, Oct 2,” Chow Wing Hong, one of the general secretaries of the federation, and Chan Kin Man, co-founder of the ‘Occupy Central’ movement, told reporters.
When asked about specifics, Chow replied, without providing further details: “We are planning to occupy government offices.”
Both called for the resignation of Hong Kong’s head of government, C.Y. Leung, as well as assurances from Beijing that the 2017 city elections will be fully democratic.
“We are very unhappy with what Leung has said,” Chow told the press near local government headquarters in the Admiralty area.
Organisers said they expected the number of participants to increase in the next few hours, since Oct 1 is a national holiday celebrating the 65th anniversary of the Chinese Communist Party coming to power and the founding of the People’s Republic.
“We must resist and the conditions are right for us to do so,” said Chan Kin Man.
The number of people protesting peacefully in favour of holding fully democratic elections in 2017 fell sharply in the early hours of Tuesday, but started to grow again after 3 p.m. when many demonstrators apparently finished work or had some rest.
According to Chan, medical aid has begun reaching various “hot spots” of the protest and more than 2,000 volunteers have offered to provide healthcare assistance.
Several volunteer medical students told Spanish news agency Efe that they were present in order to help other citizens but would not take sides in the larger political debate. “We must remain neutral,” one of them said.