In Hong Kong, more than 100,000 protesters gathered for a peaceful demonstration on Sunday. Unlike other demonstrations in recent weeks, this time there was no confrontation between protesters and the police.

The organizers themselves report that more than 1.7 million people participate in the protest, says the independent news site Hong Kong Free Press. The police hold a number of 128,000 participants at the peak of the march.

Because it rained heavily in Hong Kong, the demonstration looked like a sea of tens of thousands of umbrellas. The authorities had given permission for the demonstration, but not for a planned march. Although the demonstration was not limited to Victoria Park, the police did not intervene.

“Don’t fall for it!”

When a few groups of protesters shouted slogans to attending police, they were called to order by fellow protesters:

“Today is a peaceful demonstration! Don’t fall for it! The world is looking at us!”

Sunday’s mass demonstration shows that the protest, which has been going on for more than two months, is not yet bleeding to death. There was also a large demonstration in Hong Kong on Saturday. Thousands of teachers also participated.

The protesters are campaigning against the Beijing government and the Hong Kong driver, Carrie Lam. Their demonstrations began as a protest against a – meanwhile withdrawn – plan to allow extradition to mainland China, but now form a broader call for more democracy. They also want Lam to clear the field.

More liberties restricted

Residents of the former British crown colony always enjoyed more rights than residents of the mainland. But since President Xi Jinping took office, they have the feeling that more and more liberties are being curtailed.

The social unrest in Hong Kong combined with the trade war between China and the US can lead to an “economic typhoon”, Hong Kong’s finance minister, Paul Chan, warned on his weblog. Hong Kong’s economic growth has recently been adjusted down to almost 0 percent.

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