TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Video surfaced on Sunday (Oct. 25) showing protesters calling for the release of 12 imprisoned Hong Kong activists burning a Chinese flag in Taipei.
On Sunday, the activist groups Save 12 HK Youths (12港人關注組), the Taiwan Association for Human Rights, and the Judicial Reform Foundation held a demonstration to support the 12 Hong Kong activists who have been imprisoned in China since attempting to flee to Taiwan by boat in August. The event, titled "Global Solidarity with Twelve Hong Kong Youths," took place at SOGO Square outside Zhongxiao Fuxing MRT station.
At 2 p.m. that day, hundreds of demonstrators dressed in black began gathering at SOGO Square with placards and banners with slogans such as "Bring them back," "Save 12 HK Youth," "You can't kill us all," "Free Hong Kong, Revolution Now," and "Hong Kong Independence." Starting at about 3 p.m., the protestors began marching toward the Hong Kong Economic, Trade and Cultural Office (HKETCO) in Taipei.
By 4 p.m., the number of participants peaked at around 3,000, according to organizers. At 5 p.m., the marchers reached Hong Kong's de facto consulate, where representatives of the various civic groups present gave speeches and chanted slogans.
At about 5:25 p.m., protestors placed the crimson banner of China on the ground and set it alight, according to the man who captured the video, who wished to be identified only as Ash. In the video, the crowd steps back and chants slogans such as "Liberate Hong Kong, revolution of our times" and "Five Demands. Not one less." while the flag becomes completely engulfed in flames.
After the fire had nearly consumed the flag, police came in with a fire extinguisher, and protesters exhorted the crowd, "Don't push the police. Don't fight them," according to Ash. Police then told the protesters that they were there to protect people, not the flag.
After police extinguished the remaining embers of the flag, the protesters peacefully dispersed. The flag of Thailand could also notably be seen in the background, an expression of solidarity with pro-democracy protesters in the Southeast Asian kingdom.
Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Deputy Secretary-General Lin Fei-fan speaking to crowd. (CNA)
Video by Ash.