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Shenzhen police stage new drill using water cannons to deal with riot

(Global Times)    14:01, August 30, 2019

The People's Armed Police staged a new drill that featured an apparent large-scaled anti-riot exercises in Shenzhen's Bay Sports Center on Thursday, near Hong Kong.

Hundreds of armed officers took part in the drill in which they confronted rioters holding long batons, according to a video widely circulating online. When riot police marched forward, rioters did not stop moving forward, and some struck the officers with batons, the video showed. The officers then steadily moved forward equipped with firm shields and two water cannons. They began aiming at the rioters before spraying water at them.

A source close to the matter confirmed with the Global Times that it was an anti-riot drill staged Thursday at Shenzhen Bay Sports Center, and that the video showed the drill was large in scale.

Within a few seconds, the officers held the situation under control, and rioters began retreating.

Some rioters threw petrol bombs, but the officers effectively extinguished them.

Two red flags were spotted among the armed officers. After rioters retreated for a while, some police trucks surrounded them, ending the riot completely.

The drill mirrors the months-long ongoing protests in Hong Kong, as protesters throw petrol bombs and attack the Hong Kong police with offensive weapons, some internet users on the Chinese mainland said.

Earlier this month, the armed police have been assembling in Shenzhen, a city bordering Hong Kong, in advance of apparent large-scale exercises. The tasks and missions of the armed police include participating in dealing with rebellions, riots, serious violent and illegal incidents, terrorist attacks and other incidents endangering social safety.

Also, the Hong Kong Garrison of the Chinese People's Liberation Army conducted the 22nd rotation of its members in the early hours of Thursday since it began garrisoning Hong Kong in 1997, the Xinhua News Agency reported.

The move is a normal routine annual rotation in line with the Law of the People's Republic of China on Garrisoning the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, which was approved by the Central Military Commission.

Some internet users applauded armed police for being brave and skillful in battle. "No need for a drill, you guys can handle the riot in Hong Kong now!" a netizen with a pseudonym of Zhubanxiaomajia said in a Weibo post.

Although the Hong Kong Police Force issues a letter of objection to the protest organized by opposition groups set to take place August 31, some observers believe the ban will not stop anti-government protesters from escalating violence. 

(For the latest China news, Please follow People's Daily on Twitter and Facebook)
(Web editor: Liu Ning, Bianji)

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