Was Published

1 month ago

News Source: stuff.co.nz
Scuffle At Auckland University Over Hong Kong Extradition Bill
woman ground dispute

Scuffle At Auckland University Over Hong Kong Extradition Bill

A woman was pushed to the ground in the Monday incident. She appeared to be defending a Lennon Wall on campus, which allows people to paste protest notes against a proposed Chinese bill, which would allow suspects in Hong Kong to be extradited to mainland China.

Lennon Walls have spread across Hong Kong as protesters vow to continue demonstrating until the bill is withdrawn. 

Video footage of the incident has been posted on YouTube. A man can be heard angrily telling the woman, "There's not a country called Hong Kong in the world, just a part of China." The group continues arguing, before physically confronting each other.

READ MORE:* Hong Kong streets turn into tear-gas filled battleground for second day in a row* Hong Kong police fire tear gas as protesters march again

An Auckland University spokesperson said staff had been advised of a recent "disagreement and dispute" on campus between students who have different views of the events in Hong Kong.

Permission was sought and granted from the university to put posters up protesting against the extradition bill, the spokesperson said.

"We are in touch with the students who have been involved and a formal investigation is underway following a video and notifications sent to the vice-chancellor and other senior members of the university.

"Campus security has been briefed to ensure that neither the safety nor security of any member of the university community is placed at risk because of these differences."

The spokesperson said the vice-chancellor expected all students to abide by the university's commitment to academic freedom and freedom of speech.

"This means that while people may have different opinions on a matter, they must express those opinions in a manner that respects the rights and opinions of others."

Canterbury University China expert Anne-Marie Brady told Stuff the Hong Kong protests had "wide support" within the Chinese diaspora and New Zealand was no exception.

Brady said the New Zealand Chinese community was very diverse, including people from Taiwan, Hong Kong, Singapore and mainland China.

"Most of the mainlanders voted with their feet and have chosen to live in a democratic political system.

"Vocal support for the Chinese Communist Party government is the exception rather than the rule among the diaspora."