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UK NewsHappy Valley horse races abandoned after Hong Kong protest threat

11:15  18 september  2019
11:15  18 september  2019 Source:   reuters.com

Hong Kong protesters sing 'God Save the Queen', call for UK support

Hong Kong protesters sing 'God Save the Queen', call for UK support Hundreds of demonstrators rallied Sunday outside the British Consulate in Hong Kong, stepping up calls for international support in their months-long campaign for democratic reforms in the semi-autonomous Chinese territory. Those gathered waved British flags, sang "God save the Queen" and chanted "U.K. save Hong Kong." With banners declaring "one country, two systems is dead," they repeated calls for Hong Kong's former colonial ruler to ensure the city's autonomy is upheld under agreements made when it ceded power to China in 1997. Demonstrators held similar rallies Sept.1 at the British facility and last weekend at the U.S. Consulate.

Happy Valley horse races abandoned after Hong Kong protest threat © Reuters/JORGE SILVA A pro-China supporter waves a flag in a shopping mall at Harbour City in Hong Kong

By Donny Kwok and Twinnie Siu

HONG KONG (Reuters) - Hong Kong's Jockey Club cancelled all races planned for Wednesday after pro-democracy protesters said they would target the world-famous Happy Valley racecourse where a horse part-owned by a pro-China lawmaker was due to run.

Happy Valley horse races abandoned after Hong Kong protest threat © Reuters/JORGE SILVA A pro-China supporter is escorted out of a shopping mall after waving the national flag of China, by anti-government people at Harbour City in Hong Kong

The Jockey Club said it had been "monitoring the situation" closely in Chinese-ruled Hong Kong, which has been rocked my more than three months of sometimes violent protests.

Hong Kong protesters sing 'God Save the Queen' in plea for help from Britain

Hong Kong protesters sing 'God Save the Queen' in plea for help from Britain Protesters in Hong Konggathered outside the British Consulate and sang "God Save the Queen" on Sunday in a desperate plea for intervention from the UK. Demonstrators wer filmed waving British flags and singing the national anthem as they asked the former colonial power to put pressure on China. Banners reading "One country, two systems is dead" and "UK save Hong Kong" were carried by protesters as violent protests erupted elsewhere in the city. Hong Kong was ceded to China by Britain under a "one country, two systems" agreement in 1997. © Provided by Oath Inc. Protesters carry a British flag gather at a shopping district during a rally in Hong Kong, Sunday, Sept.

Happy Valley horse races abandoned after Hong Kong protest threat © Reuters/JORGE SILVA A pro-China supporter waves a flag in a shopping mall at Harbour City in Hong Kong

"It has conducted a thorough risk assessment of the race meeting tonight and concluded that it should be cancelled in order to preserve the security and safety of people and horses," the club said in a statement, without specifically mentioning the protests.

One horse due to have run in the evening programme is part-owned by lawmaker Junius Ho, who has taken a firm line on the protesters, calling them "black-shirted thugs".

Ho was not immediately available for comment.

Happy Valley, nestled in the hills of Hong Kong island, is a tightly populated, up-market residential area next to the Causeway Bay shopping district. There has been a horse-racing track there since just after British colonial rule began in the mid-1800s.

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Happy Valley horse races abandoned after Hong Kong protest threat © Reuters/JORGE SILVA A pro-China supporter is escorted out of a shopping mall after waving the national flag of China, by anti-government people at Harbour City in Hong Kong

Police fired water cannon and volleys of tear gas on Sunday to disperse protesters, many of them masked and wearing black, who threw petrol bombs and set fires in Causeway Bay and the nearby Central district.

In a direct challenge to Beijing, some protesters threw bricks at police outside the Chinese People's Liberation Army base and set fire to a red banner proclaiming the 70th anniversary on Oct. 1 of the founding of the People's Republic of China.

Demonstrators are angry about what they see as creeping interference by Beijing in their city's affairs despite a promise of autonomy.

Happy Valley horse races abandoned after Hong Kong protest threat © Reuters/JORGE SILVA A pro-China supporter waves a flag in a shopping mall at Harbour City in Hong Kong

The spark for the protests was planned legislation, now withdrawn, that would have allowed people to be sent to mainland China for trial. But they have since broadened into calls for universal suffrage.

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Hong Kong returned to China in 1997 under a "one country, two systems" formula that ensures freedoms not enjoyed on the mainland.

Sunday's violence followed a peaceful rally outside the British Consulate where protesters said "one country, two systems" was dead and urged Britain to call on China to stand by its promises.

Happy Valley horse races abandoned after Hong Kong protest threat © Reuters/JORGE SILVA A pro-China supporter watches as another pro-China supporter is escorted out of a shopping mall by anti-government people after he waved the national flag of China, at Harbour City in Hong Kong

China says it is committed to the arrangement, denies meddling and says the city is an internal Chinese issue. It has accused foreign powers, particularly the United States and Britain, of fomenting the unrest and told them to mind their own business.

Happy Valley horse races abandoned after Hong Kong protest threat © Reuters/JORGE SILVA A pro-China supporter is escorted out of a shopping mall by police after waving the national flag of China, at Harbour City in Hong Kong

Hong Kong democracy activists urged members of the U.S. Congress on Tuesday to pass legislation to combat human rights abuses in the city, rejecting any suggestion that such a move would be inappropriate U.S. involvement in another country's affairs.

Many football fans defied the law to boo the Chinese national anthem ahead of a soccer World Cup qualifier against Iran last week.

Iran beat Hong Kong 2-0.

(Additional reporting by Clare Jim: Writing by Nick Macfie; Editing by Kim Coghill)

USA: Sound system and beer crates - this is how the police stopped an Amish carriage .
© Picture Alliance / Volkan Furuncu / In its way, the Amish buggy is a technical marvel that can hardly be improved (symbol image) Amish are peaceful, don't drink and don't use electricity. The Trumbull County police noticed an abandoned horse with a carriage. The passengers had fled but left plenty of beer and the back of the cart was covered by a sound system., The deputy sheriff from Trumbull County in North Bloomfield was amazed to find an abandoned Amish carriage on the street.

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