This Tuesday Hong Kong police arrested nine people due to suspicion that they were engaging in terrorist activity. The officers made the arrest after it was uncovered that the group was attempting to make explosives to allegedly plant around the city.
Hong Kong is currently rather politically divided, and the past two years have been especially futile. Massive pro-democracy protests have erupted all throughout the city, as well as China in general, and these arrests come just one year after Beijing imposed strict security laws.
Of the nine individuals arrested six of them are secondary school students. The group was attempting to make the explosive chemical triacetone triperoxide (TATP) in a homemade laboratory hostel, according to police reports.
Police claimed “the group planned to use the TATP to bomb court buildings, cross-harbor tunnels, railways, and even planned to put some of these explosives in trash bins on the street to maximize damage caused by society.”
The authorities said they seized an apparatus and raw materials that would typically be used to make the TATP, as well as trace amounts of the explosive as well. Operating manuals and about 80,000 Hong Kong dollars in cash was also taken in at the scene.
Police froze around 600,000 Hong Kong dollars worth of assets that may also be linked to the bombing plot. The group was allegedly planning on setting off all the explosives as they left the city of Hong Kong for good.
TATP is unfortunately a very common chemical among terrorist organizations and groups. Since 2019, Hong Kong police have made multiple arrests over alleged bomb plots and for making TATP illegally.
Hong Kong chief executive Carrie Lam spoke at a news briefing this week to discuss the threats of violence that Hong Kong is facing.
“I hope members of the public will openly condemn threats of violence. They should not be wrongly influenced by the idea that there is only government tyranny. They should not be influenced into thinking that they can find excuses to inflict violence.”
Lam claimed that an envelope of white powder had been sent to her office but police concluded this Tuesday that the substance didn’t initially seem to be dangerous, but further tests would still be performed to make sure.
Eric Mastrota is a Contributing Editor at The National Digest based in New York. A graduate of SUNY New Paltz, he reports on world news, culture, and lifestyle. You can reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org.