Hong Kong police arrest 11, seize 'large amount of weapons'
Moscow/UNI/Sputnik: Hong Kong police say they arrested 11 people and confiscated a large amount of weapons, including a firearm and ammunition, in a raid ahead of a large rally on Sunday.
"This morning, Police mounted an operation and arrested 8 males and 3 females… A large amount of weapons, including one firearm and over a hundred bullets were seized. Intelligence suggested that the gang planned to use the weapons during the public procession today and to frame the Police," the police force said in a statement.
The police said the arrests were made for "Possession of Firearm without License," "Possession of Dangerous Goods," "Possession of Prohibited Weapons" and "Unlawful Assembly."
At the same time, Radio Television Hong Kong aired a news conference where police displayed a Glock semi-automatic pistol and 105 bullets as well as batons, pepper spray canisters and two bulletproof vests.
This is the first time police find firearms in the possession of protesters and is cause for concern, the broadcaster translated police superintendent Li Kwai-wah as saying.
According to Li, some of the detainees were allegedly members of a "radical group" behind a petrol bomb attack against a police station in October.
The arrests came just as special administrative region was bracing itself for the largest march in weeks to mark six month since the anti-Beijing protest movement began.
Hong Kong has been gripped by violent protests since June. The demonstrations, initially a response to an extradition bill, continued even after the highly unpopular measure was withdrawn in October. The protesters now claim that the authorities are abusing their power to suppress them, a claim that the government has denied.
Image: Wikiemdia Commons