Students hold images of Chow Tsz-Lok, 22, a university student who fell during protests at the weekend and died early on Friday morning, during a ceremony to pay tribute to him at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, in Hong Kong, China November 8, 2019. REUTERS/Tyrone Siu

The first death of Hong Kong Student likely to intensify unrest in Hong Kong

The death of a 22 year old Hong Kong student who was injured after falling from the third floor of the car parking early on Monday during police dispersion operation, is likely to spark a further fresh unrest in the Chinese-ruled city, Hong Kong.  This is the first student death in the months of anti-government protest in the city.

Chow Tsz-lok, an undergraduate student at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST), who had gathered in Tseung Kwan to protest a police officer’s marriage on last Sunday, fell from the Sheung Tak Car Park’s third floor to the second floor when police fired tear gas to disperse the crowd.  He remained unconscious the whole week.

His death also came at a time when many students of the university were graduating. Students wearing formal graduation gowns, many wearing masks in the defiance of the government imposed on face masks had spent minutes of silences in the main piazza of the campus after their degree. Some were in tears.

Chow’s death is expected to spark fresh protests and fuel further anger at police, who are already under pressure amid accusations of excessive force as the city grapples with its worst political crisis in decades.

UST students trashed a campus branch of Starbucks, part of a franchise perceived to be pro-Beijing, and rallies are expected across the territory as dusk falls, a traditional time for violence to pick up.

“Condemn police brutality,” they wrote on the restaurant’s glass wall.

Triggered by a now scrapped-extradition bill, protestors are blaming China’s meddling with the city’s freedom, while China denies the allegation and points to western countries for the ongoing chaos in the city.

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