Video shows Hong Kong protester shot by police officer, another set on fire
Tensions in Hong Kong continued to escalate Monday morning as a pro-democracy protester was shot at near point-blank range by a police officer and another was set on fire. Video of the shooting was streamed live on Facebook, and both incidents were caught on video.
The video shows two masked protesters in the Sai Wan Ho neighborhood of Hong Kong confronting a police officer during an early morning protest designed to disrupt rush hour traffic. It's unclear what exactly prompted the scuffle, but the officer quickly drew his gun and shoved it into the chest of one of the protesters while grabbing him with his free arm.
CBS News correspondent Ramy Inocencio said th second protester then approached the two struggling men and the officer appears to shoot him somewhere in the torso. Inocencio says three shots shots were fired in total, and the 21-year-old protester fell to the ground with a gunshot wound to the abdomen.
Police later said the man was trying to seize his weapon and that he didn't want to hurt him.
Both protesters were handcuffed and taken to the hospital. They were alive and conscious when they arrived, according to CNBC.
The Hong Kong government said in a new release that police had been responding to reports of vandalism and disruptions to traffic prior to the incident.
"During police operations, one police has discharged his service revolver, one male was shot," according to the release. They denied online rumors that officers had been ordered to "recklessly use their firearms," slamming the allegation as "totally false and malicious."
Several hours later, Inocencio says a man whose face was already covered in blood was caught-on-tape arguing with an unidentified person off-camera. The man is seen being doused in fuel and set alight. The flames were later extinguished.
Hong Kong's Beijing-appointed chief executive — a primary target for the pro-democracy movement's anger — said later Monday that violence would not "give us any solution to the problems that Hong Kong is facing. Our joint priority now as a city is to end the violence and to return Hong Kong to normal, as soon as possible."
Monday's clash came on the heels of the death of a 22-year-old student, who had fallen from a parking garage during a protest on Friday, and the arrest of several pro-democracy lawmakers over the weekend. Hong Kong has seen a steady and increasingly violent stream of protests throughout the year.
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