In a statement, the force defended the actions of its officers, claiming to have deployed “the minimum force necessary” in the situation. He said the protesters, including the young girl, were pulled over for a stop and search.
“During the interaction, she suddenly ran away suspiciously,” he said. “The officers therefore pursued and subdued her with the minimum of force necessary. ”
Police said the girl violated the city’s ban on bringing more than two people together and added that she was fined 2,000 Hong Kong dollars ($ 258).
Nearly 300 protesters were arrested Sunday, police said, in one of the biggest pro-democracy protests since China imposed a national security law in June.
Hong Kong people were originally scheduled to go to the polls on Sunday, but in July, the city’s head postponed parliamentary elections for a year, citing public health concerns.
Some pro-democracy activists, who aimed to win a majority in the city’s Legislative Council, accused the government of using the coronavirus pandemic as an excuse – for fear that pro-government parties could do wrong when voting.
Hong Kong has been in political turmoil since June 2019, when anti-government protests erupted in the city, initially spurred by a controversial extradition bill that was ultimately shelved.
Since then, the protests have evolved into a larger protest movement against the city’s pro-Beijing government, the Chinese central government and the police, whom many accuse of excessive force.
Police have consistently maintained that their tactics were the result of violence and disruption by protesters, and vigorously denied wrongdoing and accusations of brutality.
CNN’s Vanesse Chan, Bex Wright, Ivan Watson and Jadyn Sham contributed to this report.