Not everyone is joining in on the outpour of support for Hong Kong’s beloved newspaper, Apple Daily, which has become Beijing’s newest target amid a sweeping national security law that all but criminalizes dissent.
In a video that circulated online Tuesday, a man is seen jamming stacks of the paper into a recycling bin outside a mall in Sheung Shui.
How petty do Pro-Bejingers have to be?
This Pro-Bejinger decided to childishly buy up @appledaily_hk newspapers & chucked them in the bin
Source: Instagram pic.twitter.com/HWT9kTeiQ8
— Hong Kong – Be Water (@BeWaterHKG) August 11, 2020
“You’re not even reading [the newspaper] and you’re throwing it away… how can you be so selfish?” The person filming the video asks him. The man does not respond and walks away quickly.
Netizens identified the him as Innes Tang, the chairman of pro-Beijing group Politihk Social Strategic. Tang appears to be a friend of lawmaker Junius Ho, known for his fierce criticism of the pro-democracy movement, and also attended a prop-police rally alongside Ho last year.
The clip was shared in a number of Facebook groups, including one called “Love China, love Hong Kong.” Most comments praised the man in the video, calling him a “hero” and a “true comrade.”
On Twitter, supporters of the pro-democracy movement mocked the video and thanked the man for purchasing the dozen copies.
Following yesterday’s high-profile arrest of Jimmy Lai, the founder of Apple Daily and an outspoken pro-democracy activist, many are expressing outrage at what is being seen as the authorities’ latest attack on what remains of press freedom in Hong Kong. Police also conducted a thorough hours-long raid of the paper’s headquarters in Tseung Kwan O, sifting through documents and making off with more than 20 boxes of “evidence.”
The Foreign Correspondents Club sharply condemned the crackdown in a statement, which the Chinese Foreign Ministry hit out at for “misrepresent[ing] the truth” and “heap[ing] groundless accusations upon” the national security law.
This morning, convenience store shelves were cleared as many rushed to purchase the newspaper, its front page emblazoned with its signature bold font reading “Apple Daily will fight on.” About half a million copies of the paper were printed, five times more than the usual 100,000.
Someone purchased every copy of today’s Apple Daily from the Circle K in Sai Ying Pun and left them out for people to take for free. (Even attached the receipt as proof of purchase.) pic.twitter.com/2Kz9ljvxxk
— Timothy McLaughlin (@TMclaughlin3) August 11, 2020
Some bought multiple copies of the paper and left them on the street with a sign that read, “this has been paid for, free to take and read—and a receipt as proof of purchase.
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