Protests Close Hong Kong Airport For Second Day

Filed Under: Cathay Pacific

Big protests have been going on in Hong Kong for the past couple of months, though largely aviation hasn’t been impacted too much. We’ve seen some flights canceled due to employees calling in sick so they can participate in protests, but that’s about it.

Well, the past several days the airport and airlines are becoming more of a focal point of this situation. For one, we’ve seen China make huge demands of Cathay Pacific, requesting they provide the names of employees operating flights to China, and even flights using Chinese airspace (even if they’re to other destinations). The fear is that they could punish those employees who have participated in protests (though in reality this seems to me like it’s more a fear tactic).

Initially airport protests were supposed to last for three days, though yesterday marked day four of airport protests. At around 6PM local time yesterday (Monday) we saw Hong Kong International Airport close.

The protests have become increasingly severe, as the focus has shifted from being primarily about the extradition bill, to being more about the police violence and brutality that we’ve seen in the past several weeks.

The airport did reopen this morning, though it looks like it’s now closed once again, for the second day in a row. Hong Kong International Airport posted the following statement at 5:15PM local time:

Terminal operations at Hong Kong International Airport have been seriously disrupted, and all check-in processes have now been suspended. All passengers are advised to leave the terminal buildings as soon as possible. Affected passengers please contact their respective airlines for flight arrangement.

@JournoDannyAero has been providing some incredible airport coverage, which gives you a sense of just how bad things are.

As before, this doesn’t just impact people traveling to & from Hong Kong, but even those connecting there. If you’re scheduled to travel through Hong Kong, you’ll want to contact your airline and rebook.

We’ll have to see how this unfolds. As the protests continue the stakes seem to get higher. Shutting down Hong Kong International Airport for the second day is a massive move, and I imagine something has to give here pretty soon.

Stay safe, everyone…

Did anyone travel through HKG the past few days? If so, what was it like?

Comments
  1. I just left HKG after getting home from Doha. Most incoming flights have been cancelled, with a couple longhaul exceptions – though it isn’t violent yet. Expect hellish traffic, broadband signals stretched out thinner than a sheet, and get out quickly – though there’s no outright violence or petrol bombs/tear gas as of yet.

  2. Good for Singapore airport, now HKG got a bad reputation, ICN/SIN/NRT can take all transit customers from HKG.
    Bad reputation of HKG will remain for many years, HkG will lost its market share.

  3. We landed in HKG a few hours ago on AA 125. Arrivals was a mess. Wi-Fi not working. Spending one night a Sky City Marriott on our way to Vietnam tomorrow. No transportation from airport to hotel other than the Airport Express to Asia World Expo. The train was packed. All departing flights cancelled today. Hopefully our flight to Danang tomorrow is fine.

  4. Well that’s one way to lose support…ruin travel/work plans for people who have been supportive of your cause. I swear they don’t think it through properly.

  5. This is quite an interesting time for Hong Kong. I can sympathize with the protesters and it’s crazy to think they’ve managed to shut down the airport, but lets hope this quickly gets resolved for the sake of the travelling public who are innocent bystanders at this point. Certainly a lot of people enjoy Cathay and transit via HKG specifically to fly CX and not other airlines.

  6. I’ve been through twice in the past week, both in transit only. The first time was the day of the general strike, with hundreds of flights cancelled ( fortunately mine were unaffected); the second was just normal.
    I wonder how they deal with passengers in transit: it’s very common to use CX for intra-Asia connecting flights ( eg, Singapore- Korea, Bangkok -Taipei and dozens of other combinations) and long hauls.Probably many passengers got stuck: landed or enroute before the closure but then unable to get the second leg. Must be a big headache.

  7. I’m currently at HKIA and the protest just broke up. All transportation options out of the airport were shut down and only the MTR started running again about 10 min ago. It should come as no surprise but all of the protestors my wife and I interacted with were friendly and helpful. Additionally many of the travelers at the airport were in pretty good spirits and took the events in stride. What a day to land at HKG!

  8. Whether you agree with them or not, they are for sure playing with fire. Carrie Lam? Resign? Sure but that would not help Beijing. Direct Beijing action? Sure but think of the media impact. A hard comment would be Beijing does not value HKG as much as the past but its terrified any direct action would impact their overtures to Taiwan, and for that matter the world. Aviation-wise I’ve got colleagues departing next month to teach and I’m taking a study group thru HKG in December. But above that i lived there for many years and I’m so sad for my friends there. Make like water!

  9. What a sad day for us the HKG people. This will likely result in the ccp coming in to end the one country teo system deal. Not a surprise like cancer ccp has been slowly undermining the deal since it started.

    Who think China would attack hkg? If only my people had guns to defend themselves. We could make the conquest by China very costly that they rethink the situation. But now we are sheep to be slaughtered for wanting freedom

    Fortunately for the USA it’s Founding Fathers know most governments exist to rule over not rule for. But maybe too many idiots will forget that lesson and want turn USA into a paradise like China Cuba North Korea Venezuela soon enough. Crazy

    I’m lucky i take my wealth out years ago but sad made right choice to leave Question is where on earth is it safe if USA Gives up freedom like frog in soup pot

    Bad day

  10. Landed in HKG Aug 3 (Sat) and departed Aug 9 (Fri).

    On arrival, airport didn’t have protests, but protestors had shut down the road to the city so you had to take the airport express train. Then, taxi couldn’t get from train station to our hotel (protestors had shut down all the streets around the station) so we had to take the MTR. Instead of 30 min by taxi from airport to Kowloon hotel (Google Maps estimate) it took over 3 hours, 3 trains, 1 taxi, + 30 minutes of walking with all our luggage.

    When we left, there was a protest at the airport, but it was on the arrivals level so didn’t affect us at all; we had planned on big issues but because the airport notified the public they wouldn’t allow anyone in without a valid ticket (and there were checkpoints to ensure this was enforced) the departures area was dead (but we could hear the chants at the arrivals level from the Qantas Lounge past security and immigration…)

    Most of the attractions were dead during our trip. At night maybe half or less of what you’d normally expect in terms of foot traffic in the popular areas even on non-protest days. This is my 5th or 6th trip to Hong Kong and it is very sad to think what could happen as it is one of my favorite cities.

  11. Gosh. I’m supposed to fly Cathay London-‘Karta later this month. Are they issuing waivers? Now that the government of China has referred to the actions carried out by the protesters as “terrorism” does that mean I can file a claim based on that with my travel insurance? Hhhh guess I’ll fly EY ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

  12. I feel bad for the people who work at the airport. Handling the angry passengers and the others getting no pay.

  13. been to HK more than 50 times in my 25 years of life so far, and even I would avoid HK now despite the fact that I sympathize with the protesters. However, most are not so patient and would not hesitate to condemn the protests when it impacts them directly. Sad to see such a world city fall from grace as she struggles with her own identity.

  14. American is trying to be the last flight out. The crew showed up and they boarded with only half the passengers. But they haven’t taken off yet.

  15. Me and my partner had four nights booked first week of November for a little sightseeing in Hong Kong on our way to shanghai but this weekend I decided against it (maybe it will be okay by then but don’t want to ruin our holiday if not) and changed all my flights and hotels to stay extra time in Singapore. Fortunately they where Avios tickets so easy to cancel

  16. @Chris

    “It should come as no surprise but all of the protestors my wife and I interacted with were friendly and helpful.”

    If they want to be helpful then get the f*** out of the airport.

    Those radicals need to learn from what happened at BKK and the lasting effects of it. The more dumb stuff they do, the more they will lose world support and the more legit China will be. May it is the time for China to liberate the SAR?

  17. Stuck in Xi’an, China, due to this incident. Cathay Pacific staff are mute as to why. Very weird. Hope people are safe.

  18. I see a few bootlickers have already wormed their way into the comments section.

    Solidarity with the protesters against Chinese authoritarianism.

  19. @Leo “Protests agai(n)s(t) police brutality should be in the US, not there”

    I don’t see NYPD or LAPD will let a few thousand protesters shut down JFK or LAX. Nor would DC or Capital police let demonstrators smash their way into US Congress. HK Police seems to be fairly restrained by comparison.

  20. “It should come as no surprise but all of the protestors my wife and I interacted with were friendly and helpful.”
    – Probably because you’re a westerner. They’re targeting women and children and weaker men with a Chinese look. If you look string enough, they’ll be friendly. The flight attendants also treat Mandarin speakers differently compared to English & Cantonese speakers on many flights recently.

    China doesn’t need to get physically involved. Even if it stop supplying those deeply discounted food (plus, only the best grade food from the mainland were selected and transferred there) and water and electricity, the sky rocketing market price will hurt these people.

    I mean, I don’t agree with ccp’s many policies, but a protest like this would not win anything for hkg.

  21. Per past experiences, most of this will end as school starts in the fall. Most of them are students looking for a way to release their anger against the society and to get some extra money.

    Plus, ccp is dealing with this in pure capitalist way. They found who’s funding the protests, buy out their shares on the market, called a shareholder’s meeting and voted the leader out.

  22. @tony what I said in another post, the police did do messed up stuff that would have been sued if it happened in the western world. Not gonna repeat here.

    Back to aviation. The T1 and T2 at HKG are essentially two check-in halls, and they are connected by train leading to the same airside area. This is a convenient design for pax, but If the terminals are completely separated like other major airports, I imagine the consequences won’t be that widespread.

    What happened today. Like 100s of thousands flooded in to both the departure and arrival halls in T1 and smaller crowd at T2, from what I saw in the live feeds, they were crowded but not inaccessible. They were peaceful in general (or else the police would have already chimed in). I imagine the closure is just for precaution, aviation safety and stuff. It’s not like the protestors “took over” the airport like you guys imagined, they didn’t even make it the the immigration hall.

  23. I am very pleased to see protestors are not afraid.

    It is important for their own future.

    Keep protesting!

  24. @Jorge

    I doubt they will lose support for something like this. People know what these protests are for, and sometimes, you need to be inconvenienced to win long term gains.

    “But maybe too many idiots will forget that lesson and want turn USA into a paradise like China Cuba North Korea Venezuela soon enough”

    Gotta love people who are “pro” Hong Kong, throwing in these back-handed digs…

    “May it is the time for China to liberate the SAR?”

    From whom, dear, it’s own people?

  25. The protest today is peaceful and no violence. May have some blockage to the departure and arrival hall but that’s solely due to too many people. As from what I saw on live broadcast there are still passageway for people to go check-in, get out of airport, etc. However it’s the AA decision to close the airport while there is no chaos. Some suspect that it is a move to worsen the protestors ‘ image to the whole world.

  26. Support the protestors and have their demands met by the HK government. Only then will things improve for Hong Kong. The status quo is untenable.

  27. I don’t think that HK have an actual plan here. They just protest for the sake of protesting. China will never step down and if anything HK makes it really really easy for China to claim more control now over HK because HK proves itself to be not in control of it’s citizen. China is the most important market in the world, no other country will intervene with China, especially not given that the largest country in this world – Russia – would always back China in a geopolitical conflict, so nobody has the balls to challenge Russia and China at once for good reasons.

  28. Lucky and Others at the OMAAT team – would be incredibly incredibly helpful for me (and I’m sure for all of the other readers caught up in the Hong Long mess) to know what rights we have vis a vis the airlines and/or credit card trip insurance policies. Does civil unrest count for trip delay reimbursement? I can’t get any answers right now from either the airline, my credit card company, or Cheapo (the OLA from whom I bought this wretched ticket.

  29. I arrived at HKG last week on the night of 8th via QR816, which is the flight turned around. However, due to the typhoon, my flight to the mainland on 9th was canceled, after we have already boarded the plane. The airline(Cathay dragon) didn’t really offer any accommodation or food, because the cancellation was due to a natural disaster. I encountered the protesters on my way back to the city. It was very crowded, but the airport security was able to help us get through. I was stranded in HK over the weekend, then I got reschedule to a noon flight on 12th, so I left right before the closure of the airport. Honestly, I felt I lucked out, and it is good to be able to sleep in my own bed finally.

  30. Flight cancellation is a dreadful event, but I am much much sympathetic to the protesters at HKG fighting for democracy, than to pilots on strike fighting for more money.

  31. ERROR? The protests have largely shifted from primarily being about the extradition bill, to being more about the police violence and brutality that we’ve seen as the protests have gotten worse.
    /////
    The protests are also about electing their President (called Chief Executive of Hong Kong) directly by the people. Right now, the head of government, sort of the Trump and Obama of Hong Kong, is appointed by mainland China on advice of the legislature. The average citizen has absolutely no say on the matter.

  32. I wish something like this would happen in the U.S. I feel like we need massive protests in order to inspire change on gun laws, healthcare, voter suppression, big money in politics, etc.

  33. @derek Hong Kong people had even less say on who became their Governor during the British colonial period. The problem with Hong Kong is more about economics than politics. With ever rising cost of living (mainly due to property prices) and the lack of opportunities (especially relative to mainland cities such as Shenzhen across the river), young people feel irrelevant and alienated. They can no longer feel “superior” to their mainland counterparts as they did previously.

  34. @Daniel D

    In the US, we don’t have rich parents feeding us while we go out for months protesting.

    We did have many movements but we are civil enough not to shut down airports or disrupt lives of bystanders.
    Does #MeToo or #BlackLivesMatter or Eric Garner didn’t cause change?

    Now gun law that is a whole different ballgame. It’s like trying to outlaw chopsticks in HK. It’s a whole f***ing amendment to the Constitution. Never going to happen especially if idiots like @callum are among us.

  35. HongKongers again fighting against Communism (they protested for FOUR years when the British left them to communist China).

    Some clueless new generation American fighting for COMMUNISM in their land.

    Powerful Message for some of the clueless new generation Americans.

  36. Travel to Hong Kong will be down this fall. Good for non revs as American’s flights are always full except a day or two around major holidays. I was in Hong Kong on July 4th and as a tourist I felt oblivious to the protests. Hong Kong is beautiful. There are no drugs or homeless people there. I wish the US would take to that.

  37. @Eskimo

    Sometimes you type as if you are a Chinese citizen, sometimes as an American one…whichever, you seemed bound and determined to discredit the HK protestors however you can.

  38. Not just affecting current travel plans – but planned trips too. My daughter is due to travel to HKG with her theatre group (55 travellers) next month. This will be cancelled along with 8 days hotel accommodation. Australian Travel Smart site says the following – ‘Exercise a high degree of caution in Hong Kong. ‘Flash mob’ protests and random attacks on protestors have become less predictable and are expected to continue. Tourist and residential areas have been affected. There is a high risk of violent confrontation between protestors and police, or criminally-linked individuals. The risk is greater at night, on weekends and public holidays. We strongly recommend you avoid large public gatherings. Monitor local media and follow the advice of local authorities’.

  39. @Nate
    That’s true , I saw some near my hotel on Kings Rd near North Point but it is a different behavior. Homelessness is rampant in some US cities and you can often tell someone is mentally ill or strung out on drugs just by observing them.

  40. All these privileged (white) people who have lived their entire lives in free and democratic societies, attacking other (non-white) people who are fighting so that they can escape tyranny. Their children’s futures are more important than you making your connection to Bali.

  41. @BBK

    Their fight is less against communism as it is against the authoritarian government of China. It’d do you some good to actually research the issue.

  42. Technically all Cathay flights pass through Chinese airspace because of the location of Hong Kong

    Btw I would expect Cathay to lose money this quarter because of these protests reducing passenger traffic to Hong Kong

  43. It’s their right. Their city. Their lives. They can be as disruptive as they want. We’re visitors and we have no say just because our travel plans are inconvenienced other than not spend our travel money there in the future. People who are outraged not because of the issues but because your flight was cancelled…yeah that’s the definition of entitled….. or a communist bot. Your few hours of inconvenience is nothing to what the young folks in HK have been dealing with for the last 15 years. The cost of living, trapped in the city, bullied by china, bullied by other nations, having the older generation tell you to be quiet and take it…sound sort of like employees who were assaulted and HR tell them to just be a good employee and look the other way. I don’t even live there and I can see that. Last I check, the USA was born from rebelling against that type of behavior.

  44. These protestors are so ridiculous. They are committing criminal activities which completely undermine their demands. These protestors show no respect for the rule of law. At the same time, The Hong Kong government has fully respected the rule of law by agreeing to abandon the extradition bill. These protestors will force the PRC to assert greater control of Hong Kong. Don’t forget, Every single country in the world recognises Hong Kong to be fully part of the PRC and not a single country has come our in support of these protests

  45. @Eskimo — “Now gun law that is a whole different ballgame. … It’s a whole f***ing amendment to the Constitution.”

    How *hypocritical* — everyone “conveniently” forgets that the USA 2nd Amendment is what deters potential takeovers by dictators/tyrants! Did you forget that Hong Kong is trying to accomplish the same *without* the benefit of such deterrents … hope that there will *not* be a Tiananmen 2 event!

  46. @Aaron
    Are you trying to ethnically profile me? That is racism.

    Regardless of my ethnicity, I don’t support or undermine any particular group. It’s just disgusting to disrupt other people’s lives. Gandhi never closed airports or trains stations.

    Facts that many have pointed out everywhere, these protesters are young people who wasn’t old enough to understand 97. Did you see people over 50 coming out? Now look at Brexit, it was the older people who wanted out, and legitly so, since the lived life before EU. Now if you are among the younger people, don’t blame China. Blame your parents. There a countless of people who saw this coming before 97. Guess what, they went to Canada or Taiwan. Those who migrated cares about CCP, those who stayed probably didn’t.

    You seem to take sides which I’m fine. I’m not taking sides but anyone who makes others miserable doesn’t deserve support.

    Now I’m not going to go over (or take sides) fake speculation or news or something not clear cut. Who shot first, who use force, who has tanks, who has mercenaries, who threw rocks, who use gangsters, who deserve or doesn’t deserve. All debatable.
    Now occupying airport is a clear cut. Whatever the reason you don’t go blocking off airports. Holding the public hostage doesn’t make your point any stronger.

    You want peaceful demonstration, look at Gandhi.
    You want civil rights, look at Gandhi.
    You want independence, look at Gandhi.

    You want opposite, look at Trump followers.

  47. @BillC

    Now you get me wrong, I agree a well supported militia is what kept USA free. You are spot on about the intentions of the 2nd amendment.

    Now the problem are people carrying guns for the wrong reasons and hide behind the 2nd amendment.
    Columbine
    Sandy Hook
    Las Vegas
    Parkland
    El Paso
    Dayton.

    Now think what ifs.
    What is HK doing have a well armed militia, do you think they could fend off the PLA using force?

    You know humanity and society have come a long way since 1791 and even in 1892, a full century, we realize The pen is mightier than the sword. Guns and ammo are not the only weapon militias can use against tyranny.

  48. @Eskimo — “Now the problem are people carrying guns for the wrong reasons and hide behind the 2nd amendment.”

    With all due respect … I do *not* think that any of those “mass shooters” are doing any “hiding” behind the 2nd Amendment, since they are all mentally deranged killers and, as such, do *not* have the wherewithall to engage in such “hiding”! They will use whatever devices may be available to them — note the ratio between annual killings committed by knives vs. by guns in USA …

    As for the people of HK vs. PLA, much of the time it’s all about the *principle* of it all … and you’re correct that, in the longer term, “the pen is mightier than the sword” (and today the Internet media is mightier than the pen), but, in the short term, no pen is going to prevent the PLA from inflicting mayhem and bloodshed in HK! 🙁

  49. @Eskimo — “Facts that many have pointed out everywhere, these protesters are young people who wasn’t old enough to understand 97. Did you see people over 50 coming out?”

    Actually, if you read the local HK news more closely, they have reported that a significant portion of the protesters *are* of older age (>50 years old) because, as they put it, they’re protesting to protect the concept of freedom/liberty on behalf of their grandchildren! The young in HK actually *do* understand about personal freedom/liberty because of the Internet-based social media that spread information all over the world about anything/everything!
    ———————
    “You want opposite, look at Trump followers.” —

    If you’re trying to insinuate that Trump supporters spew violence, since when does Antifa support Trump, anyway? After all, *they* are the ones that perpetrate mass chaos/mayhem against common citizens (whether Trump supporters or *not*) just for “being in their way”! Contrast Antifa with Tea Party protesters, who often leave their protest venues *cleaner* afterwards than before they arrived!

  50. The protests have turned from “everyone” to the “kids”..bunch of people who think destroying property and throwing bricks at police is ok.

  51. Just landed in JFK. Ours was the last flight (840, I see 846 took off 5 hours late) to take off before the airport shutdown on Monday. On Sunday we arrived late and there were still a few protesters though most had left… grim times for HK unfortunately.

  52. @Chris
    There are some protests that are meant to be peaceful, and some more open ended. On top of that, most of the professional groups, and even the civil servant, organised protests within their own profession and they are peaceful and well received. The aviation industry organised a few as well. I believe wherever you are based only has access to news on the violent side of the series of protests. ffs they even organised separate protests for specific groups like the elderly and full time mom. Probably they didn’t end up on your TV screen.

  53. @Chris — “The protests have turned from ‘everyone’ to the ‘kids’..bunch of people who think destroying property and throwing bricks at police is ok.”

    I guess you must have missed past reports where early protesters were exhibiting their best behavior to keep their protests peaceful *and* civil — to the extent that everyone uniformly parted a special corridor for an ambulance to pass through the crowd to carry a patient to a hospital!

    But then *some* elements of the HK triads were purportedly “contracted” to aggressively chase down and hurt some of the peaceful protesters, even at MRT (subway) stations, while the HK police just stood by and did absolutely nothing! Then some other protesters were kicked by HK’s purported “law enforcement” — including a pregnant woman …

    Lately the protests have been infiltrated by establishment elements who masqueraded as fellow protesters just so that they could get into the midst of the crowds and try to seek out “leaders” and inflict bloodshed upon them! One was “booted” on the ground bleeding profusely, with his face in his own pool of blood!

    So … once you know that the so-called “police” are actually *not* going to protect those who were originally *peacefully* protesting and are now actively engaged with establishment elements who are “out to get you,” what would YOU do, in self-defense?

    Do you actually understand that HK is, in their minds, in an *existential* struggle to keep whatever is left of their past freedoms/liberties alive — something that everyone seems to take for granted elsewhere in this world, but especially within USA?

  54. Protesting is understandable, but paralyzing public transportation is definitely not.

    Going on a strike is understandable, but preventing everybody else from going to work is definitely not.

    Peaceful demonstration is understandable, but peaceful only to Caucasians is purely laughable.

  55. in other news, there is a new Hyatt Centric opening in North Point (HK Island) and is a category 4. According to the Hyatt app, it’s due to open end of August.

  56. @BillC

    Your constant use of asterisk is very irritating to the eye. I assume you want to highlight that particular word but you can’t use bold here. May I suggest you use ALL CAPS to do it instead.

    Now back to our point, I don’t see pictures of old people at the airport from any, independent or not, news outlets.

    HK is not my war, but closing airports affects bystanders globally. I am and will stand neutral in this matter (regardless of what you or Aaron thinks) but from reading your comments, you obviously picked a side. Therefore, I don’t have more to comment. All I can say is, try taking a step back. Look at the big picture and try not to be someone’s pawn.

    Now for antifascism, let’s not try to involve all radicals in this world. There are radicals in both left wing or right wing. This will never end good.
    I don’t even understand why politics still have only left or right wing. Why not thigh drumsticks or breast. This is so 18th century thinking, if it’s left me it’s right. Much has changed.

  57. @david

    The HC is reflagged from a current Hotel Vic, which is relatively new. Check that out as well if you are interested in this property!

  58. @Eskimo — “… I don’t see pictures of old people at the airport …”

    Can’t win with those asterisks — others had complained about using all those Caps and insisted that I use those asterisks instead … sigh! 🙁

    I did NOT say that the old people protested at the airport … they were protesting in many districts of HK in the earlier days before everything went violent due to external circumstances!

    I can agree that “forcing” a prolonged closure of international travel venues can be easily misconstrued, but I haven’t yet seen any reports that claimed those protesters were being abusively violent to threaten travelers, thereby “coercing” such an unprecedented action by HK airport authorities … in fact, it was a group “sit-in” to protest how HK police had purportedly shot a TST female protester in her eye, that could now result in her going blind! Since this didn’t sound like a violent mob action, did HK airport actually need to close down at all?

    As for the purported “anti-Fascism” movement, just note the HYPOCRISY of the worldwide Antifa groups!

  59. The protesters are going back into the airport. News reports are saying dozens more flights cancelled. As at 3.00pm Hong Kong time.

  60. Was in HKG on August1, 2 and 5. Overnight layover on 1st from BKK, HKG-PVG the next day. No issues both legs. August 5; PVG-HKG-BKK. 1 hour delay departing PVG and 777-300 regional was understaffed as the female captain and fo made an announcement upon boarding complete. was told last flight to BKK that night was canceled (i was booked on the 9:35pm one originally)90 percent of shops closed upon arrival into HKG and transit was a breeze. Made my connecting flight with just a 45 minute window, arrived at boarding gate at last call. Arrived into BKK at midnight on time.

  61. I am only surprised it took Hong Kong 22 years to become this concerned about their puppet government. All will quickly be forgotten by the traveling public once the airport reopens.

  62. All the Bernie-Warren socialists must be cheering for the People’s Army to come in a stop this. Maybe crack some skulls, but hey healthcare for all.

  63. Our correspondence team has been in the epicentre for a month leading up to the recent situation. The is a lively energy within the city that I have not observed over the years that I have visited HK. The current strife for democracy from Hong Kongers is inspiring, even if disruptive.
    After all, revolutions and struggle for freedom aren’t obtained without some repercussions. Operations at the airport are limited. We had some team members transfer to our HK office form South Asia this morning. Press flights are operating, albeit, with limited ground operation. In our case, the team had jumped upon a diplomatic convoy flying from South Asia, and were given a very tight window in which to land and turn around.

  64. I am proud to see the people of Hong Kong stand up for their civil liberties. I come from France, where we consider it our right to protest for injustice. I stand with Hong Kong. During this time, life for many can be a struggle and there will be inconvenience for people, but there is a larger role. The world only listens when some are inconvenienced.

  65. @JDH – by your logic, most of the developed nations in the world can be considered akin to China in their political regime. The fact is that people only those with money can afford healthcare in the US – I guess you only have the right to life if you can afford it.

  66. @John (third comment) hello the person who has “landed at HKG a few hours ago on AA125” and scheduled to fly out to Danang “tomorrow” for two days in a row!

  67. The sit-in or protestors trying to shut down the airport was triggered by the reckless attack on protestors on the past Sunday. A female protestor was shot in the eye by bean bag round and, according to multiple news reports, her right eye ball was ruptured and probably permanently blind. There are some other reports of excessive force used by Hong Kong Police
    https://qz.com/1685608/hong-kong-police-roll-out-violent-tactics-against-protestors/ has links to some video showing what happened on Sunday

  68. @Eskimo

    I don’t think you know what the definition of racism is. Just pointing out the inconsistencies of your posts isn’t racist…

    “these protesters are young people who wasn’t old enough to understand 97. Did you see people over 50 coming out?”

    So what? They are entitled to protest if they want to and feel strongly enough about the issue.

    “I’m not taking sides”

    The fact that you keep landing on the side of the Chinese government belies that statement.

    Also, what worked for Ghandi and India doesn’t always work for everywhere else.

    Also, the Brexit situation is not the same as this.

    “Protesting is understandable, but paralyzing public transportation is definitely not.”

    Why, exactly?

    “All the Bernie-Warren socialists must be cheering for the People’s Army to come in a stop this. Maybe crack some skulls, but hey healthcare for all.”

    Nah, I think they’re actually rooting for the people of HK to actually achieve more democratic and civil freedoms.

  69. “All the Bernie-Warren socialists must be cheering for the People’s Army to come in a stop this. Maybe crack some skulls, but hey healthcare for all.”

    Essentially all Western socialists are democratic socialists or social democrats. Every one I know sides with the protesters in solidarity with their pursuit of basic democratic freedoms against an authoritarian Chinese government.

  70. Sad to say, but the protesters at this point are practically begging the PLA to march in and restore order. I sympathize with their situation, but if they keep it up they will lose both the battle and the war.

  71. I can understand these people’s frustration…, but I totally missed the logic behind these protests which paralyzed their own city, and made HK a worse place in the short and mid term. While at the same time, they had no leverage over the Chinese central government at all…

    I don’t believe the central government of China actually worries about the self-harming style protests in HK as much as its recent propaganda sound.

    It is not like Tainanmen in 1989, when the events could escalate and spread to the whole nation and the government might have fall like what happened in east europe that year.

    I bet Beijing will just sit idly instead of heavy handed intervene, and all the rhetorics from Beijing are just propagandas targeting domestic audiences in mainland… It served as a perfect distraction from its weakening economy and ongoing trade wars. Considering its emphasis on separatist fragments of the protests and possible foreign interventions, it sound like a nationalism propaganda to me.

    Politically, the central government has very strong domestic support, and most (if not all) mainlanders are on the government’s side where their belief is that all those events were driven by the separatists and foreign powers”. Economically, China is not dependent on HK, while life and business in HK depend on China heavily. In HK, the society is very divided on the issue too, and the protesters had alienated the police force who could actually had been united to achieve the common goal. Even this situation escalates to something out of control and turn HK to a hell. It still has little chance spreading to mainland. So it could only harm HK people further, and had little or no harm to central government in Beijing… With no direct heavy handed intervention and simply leaving everything to HK itself, the central government will appear to be the responsible guy who respect HK’s autonomy while paying little cost itself.

    I cannot see these protests can lead HK to anywhere better… Just imagine a HK no longer a place easy to do business, and rule of law…

    After all, if the government just stands firm behind the HK government and police for another 28 more years, the autonomy of HK is automatically to end by the basic law.

  72. @Mike
    I can only hope that if the PLA marches in, Hong Kong becomes the PRC’s Grozny. As much as I sympathize with them, I can’t see an outcome that both gets the PRC to back down and doesn’t involve thousands of Hong Kong casualties. All I can do is hope that the PRC decides the backlash from using force isn’t worth the extradition bill and Lam’s position.

  73. @BillC

    “HK police had purportedly shot a TST female protester in her eye”

    That is why I ask you to take a step back. And I kinda guess something like that from the numerous eyepatchs these kids wore. I don’t care for answers but just answer yourself this before joining the mob.
    1. Did anyone force her to come out or stay in the front line?
    2. Did she got shot by a. point-blank or less than 2m at the eye, or b. by a sniper aiming directly at her eye?
    3. Was she the only person injured and not a single person close by got shot by rubber bullets, I assume?
    4. The shooter had some personal matters with her and wants to get even?

    If it a yes to any one of these questions, those kids have a point to be mad at the police. (still not a reason to shutdown an airport)
    If it is no to all. She was of victim of her own. Not that she deserves it but the police had to do crowd control. (Again I’m not going into who shot first, irrelevant) You don’t go to war and expect to not get shot.
    But don’t blame the police for that.

    Once you talk about politics and violence, it’s HYPOCRISY everywhere.

    @Aaron

    You sound so young and naive. Look at all you response to everyone. You obviously are supporting one side blindly. Anyone who oppose your thought is with the Chinese.

    Look, most people, myself included, don’t really care to pick sides or anything. It’s your war not ours.

    Fact is airport is closed and the Chinese didn’t close them. Fact is people are unhappy the airport is closed.

    I mentioned more peaceful way like Gandhi. But yes, you can always blindly say nothing is applicable.
    You say Brexit is not the same. Well if you didn’t blindly read my comments, I never said it was the same.

    Aaron, the whole world knows what you are fighting for. They also know what big mess you made, now get those people out of the airport. If you kids like airport so much, I personally suggest Kai Tak. Go there and leave the real flyers alone.

  74. Silly HK residents. My vacation/business plans are far more important that your civil rights.

  75. “You sound so young and naive. Look at all you response to everyone. You obviously are supporting one side blindly. Anyone who oppose your thought is with the Chinese.”

    Of course I am supporting one side blindly, and unlike you, I admit it.

    “Look, most people, myself included, don’t really care to pick sides or anything. It’s your war not ours.”

    It isn’t my war either, but unlike you, I admit to being biased for one side. You clearly are, you just try and say you aren’t, for some reason.

    “Fact is airport is closed and the Chinese didn’t close them. Fact is people are unhappy the airport is closed.”

    Yes. And? Again, it’s the airport in HK, and most of the people are behind the protests, so…who cares if we are unhappy or not?

    “I mentioned more peaceful way like Gandhi. But yes, you can always blindly say nothing is applicable.”

    Again, different situation. Very different.

    “You say Brexit is not the same. Well if you didn’t blindly read my comments, I never said it was the same.”

    You are equating the situations. Do you need someone to define what equating means?

    “Aaron, the whole world knows what you are fighting for. They also know what big mess you made, now get those people out of the airport. If you kids like airport so much, I personally suggest Kai Tak. Go there and leave the real flyers alone.”

    I am not from Hong Kong, I just support justice with relation to the people of Hong Kong. And hope they achieve what they are fighting for, just as I know what your side, the Chinese government, is fighting against.

  76. @Eskimo — “… I don’t care for answers but just answer yourself this before joining the mob. … but the police had to do crowd control. (Again I’m not going into who shot first, irrelevant) … But don’t blame the police for that.” —

    Good grief! You kinda missed the point in all of this! Your questions are totally irrelevant, with regards to the behavior of HK police or “other operators,” who have resorted to excessive force against these protesters! You can NOT just disregard that proverbial “who shot first” in these situations!

    There are PROPER ways to do crowd control and then there are INCENDIARY ways to do crowd control, especially when this entire protest movement started out, originally, as an entirely PEACEFUL and CIVIL public engagement process — did you forget about how those protesters, early on, collectively and voluntarily cleared a passageway for an ambulance to pass through their crowd to take a patient to a hospital? So … HOW did things then degenerate from that PEACEFUL and CIVIL environment into what is now a CHAOTIC situation with many personal injuries? WHY did some groups of protesters feel compelled to use some lesser forms of “counter-force” to protect themselves?

    I’m totally in favor of a peaceful and law-abiding society, with law enforcement being “friends” of the people, but I no longer think that is the case in HK today … how do we know whether this big protest movement has NOT been infiltrated by saboteurs that want to inflame some protesters into using ever increasing levels of “counter-force” to protect themselves, just so that those operators can then create the “necessary pretexts” for China to unleash its PLA to Occupy HK during some night in the (near) future?

  77. @Kevin — “… I cannot see these protests can lead HK to anywhere better… Just imagine a HK no longer a place easy to do business, and rule of law… ”

    You DO make some pragmatic observations …

    BUT … let’s recall what instigated this whole protest movement, to begin with … Carrie Lam put forth a proposal for a new extradition law that would have allowed the transfer to China for trials of people charged in HK with certain classes of infractions. For those who actually LIVE in HK, this type of law would make their lives a total nightmare, since several of their local book publishers who advocated for more open freedoms/liberties had actually been kidnapped before, from HK, and taken to China for “trials,” much to the uproars of worldwide human rights agencies!

    This proposed law, if passed, would have made such kidnappings entirely unnecessary because it would then be totally LEGAL to extradite those so charged! After all of the earlier public protests, LegCo in HK merely “tabled” the proposed law (meaning it could be very easily passed in the future), rather than withdrawing it altogether from consideration (as the public demanded)! To date this proposed law is STILL in a “tabled” status and hence the protests STILL continue!

    I guess most people who do NOT live in HK just can NOT properly empathize with the fears and dangers that HK people feel, and have to live with, daily!

  78. @Ozbiggles

    It is now widely rumored that Carrie Lam will step down once the protests are over. Not only because Beijing needs a scapegoat for the mess, but also because her recent phone talk with the British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab is considered “unacceptable” to Beijing. Raab talked about how British supports the high level of autonomy of Hong Kong under the “One Country, Two Systems” Policy, how British concerned about the protest, and how tightly British are linked to Hong Kong, which are all viewed unacceptable by Beijing as Britain trying to interfere with Hong Kong’s domestic affairs and exert its past colonial influence.

  79. @Eskimo

    Been to HK much? I guess not. Your statement about Kai Tak cracked me up..

    Kai Tak is long gone and now 1) a cruise ship terminal, 2) construction site for several residential apartments

  80. LOL, I just wish debit can shed some wisdom around here.

    It was fun trying to talk some sense into zealots here. Fun is over for me and time to retire. All I need to do is avoid HKG for the near future. Maybe after the dust settles go visit to take advantage of a cheap torn city just like BKK after the airport closed. And probably have to avoid HKG again in 2047, which guess what, you’re all f***ed by that time anyway.

    @ooyaboon
    Been there enough to know what you’re thinking. Yes, I’m aware it’s under redevelopment. My sarcasm to them is there are many huge open spaces for them to protest and not disrupt other people. Preferably go invade where the south apron used to be. Yes I’m that familiar.

  81. @BillC
    I DO understand HK people’s frustrations! But that is not an excuse to do self-harm… It is time to reflect what is the right way to fix the system. After all, it is the people in HK got hurt most! with little to no harm on the Beijing side.

    At least the young protesters should try to reconcile with the members of the police force, businesses and “older people”. With their support, I believe they have a better chance to succeed.

    But now, those young protesters seemed to increasingly treat their fellow citizens as their enemy. It will only make the society more divided. With a divided and infighting HK, Beijing has more excuses not to give HK more freedom. It is almost like a gift to Beijing.

  82. Is HK divided though? Many business and “older people” are on the side of the protestors too, so to paint it all as just being the young people is disingenuous. And they certainly are not treating their fellow citizens as their enemy. They see the Chinese government as their enemy…

    What is the “right way” to fix the system? I suppose the best way in your eyes is for them to just sit back, do nothing, and let China use it’s puppet government in HK to introduce whatever laws it sees fit?

    And the end of the day, it is up to the people of HK to determine their own fate. If they are willing to suffer in the short term to achieve long term gains…well, that is their right.

  83. @Julia — you are correct in every aspect!

    @Kevin — “… But that is not an excuse to do self-harm… It is time to reflect what is the right way to fix the system. After all, it is the people in HK got hurt most! with little to no harm on the Beijing side.”

    HK has had since 1997 – 2019 (22 years) to experience China’s “one country, two systems” style of government before arriving at where they are today, with their protesting! I’m guessing that IF there were a “nice” way to “fix” the system, the HK people (who are most likely above average intelligence!) would have done so, by now — so then there would have been NO need for all of their current protesting, right?

    As for “reconciliation” it is NOT the “police force, businesses, and ‘older people'” who have the power to sway the HK government into reconciling with the protesters — only Beijing can do that! Do you believe that Beijing is interested to do that?

    As for the protesters who “… increasingly treat their fellow citizens as their enemy …”, from where do you get such an interpretation of the events in HK? Just about every segment of HK society has supported the protesters, excepting the police force (by governmental mandate), certain government-controlled media (also by mandate), and HK government itself (as a given)!

    As for “Beijing has more excuses not to give HK more freedom,” from where do you get such an idea? Beijing has already reneged on the original terms of its 1997 Agreement by collapsing any hope for self-styled elections in HK, so how can more freedom be given to HK? Are you suggesting that Beijing will back-track on its reneging?

  84. Ok I am going to buck the trend here and actually talk about the subject without a political view. I am in Hong Kong now, arrived Monday morning at 8:15. Right on time thanks to Air Astana. Ben thanks for the review two years ago that I found on the web, you are right it is a great airline. By the time I got to Arrival Hall B it was quiet, no demonstration

    Today I have 6:20pm flight out of terminal one. Decided to arrive early, it is 3:00pm as I write this inside Terminal one. Traffic was light and no demonstrations outside. Security was at each door checking boarding passes but this Disney like line went fast, less than five minutes. Check in at Miat’s counter was fast as was immigration. All in all the troubles at HKG are not apparent this afternoon. Looking forward to my flight to Ulaan Baatar.

  85. Did you stop to think…why the airport? Because now they have International news coverage…your all talking about it…all over the world…

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