HONG KONG: Hong Kong's MTR Corporation on Tuesday (Sep 10) released CCTV pictures in an attempt to quell rumours surrounding police action at an MTR station last month.
The police stormed trains at Prince Edward station in Mong Kok on the night of Aug 31, making several arrests after protesters rushed into the station.
The police operation led to further protests outside the station, with crowds forming at its exits. Paramedics were also called to the station later that evening.
Since then, rumours have been circulating online that three protesters had died during the police operation - a claim authorities have rejected as untrue.
At a multi-agency press conference on Tuesday, Hong Kong police acting chief superintendent of Police Public Relations Branch Yu Hoi-kwan said: "There is a (widely) circulated online rumour alleging that the violent incident in Prince Edward MTR station has resulted in death.
"The Hong Kong government, MTR corporation and different departments have clarified repeatedly it is totally false. There is certainly no death."
MTR chief of operations Sammy Wong acknowledged the public's desire for more information about the Aug 31 incident.
"At the same time, there are also concerns about the privacy issues ... which affects many travelling public in the system," he added.
Hong Kong's Fire Services Department (FSD) had no record of any injured protesters being taken away by police officers while they were being treated, said senior assistant chief ambulance officer Lo Shun-tong.
"For the FSD officers and ambulance men on spots, no FSD personal saw any seriously injured persons being taken away by the police."
CCTV DAMAGED OR DEFACED
Since that evening, protesters have called for the corporation to release CCTV footage of the police operation.
MTR Corporation also released a timeline and images from CCTV cameras, but it noted that CCTV footage of the night was "not comprehensive" due to three cameras being damaged or defaced.
According to MTR's timeline, an evacuation was triggered at the station after "passenger disputes" on one of the trains at the station platform.
Passenger alarm devices on the train were also activated and smoke was seen coming from one of the train's compartments.
Riot police subsequently entered the station and "carried out operations", according to MTR Corporation.
About two hours after the police arrived, a "non-passenger" train was arranged by MTR at police's request to evacuate injured people from Prince Edward station to Lai Chi Kok station, where seven people were then taken to hospital for treatment.
MTR Corporation also released a timeline and CCTV stills from Yau Ma Tei station, detailing how three injured people had arrived at the station on a train from Prince Edward station.
Staff at Yau Ma Tei helped the injured people before they were taken out of the station by paramedics for further treatment.
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Hong Kong has been plunged into its biggest political crisis in decades after a controversial extradition Bill sparked mass protests when it was first proposed in February.
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