SCMP Wednesday, May 9, 2001


Police cut protesters' pro-democracy links

CHOW CHUNG-YAN

Seven pro-democracy activists were arrested yesterday after chaining themselves to a flagpole outside the Convention and Exhibition Centre.
After a two-hour stand-off between police and members of the Social Democratic Forum, officers cut the chains and carried the protesters away. The struggling activists shouted "more democracy for China" as they were taken to Wan Chai police station.
Peter Hunt, Wan Chai district deputy commander, said they were likely to be charged with breaching the peace and obstructing police. They were due to be released early this morning.
Protester Lau San-ching earlier said they were demanding greater democracy, including that the chief executive be elected by universal suffrage.
Kandy Chan, director of operations for the Convention Centre, said the protest disrupted preparations for the Fortune Global Forum.