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Hong Kong Triads Envious of Student Protesters in Satirical Declaration

Posted: 10/9/2014 4:51 pm

triads mafia


Hong Kong’s criminal underworld, run by triads, has come to the fore over the past week after thugs appeared in the city’s popular shopping district of Mong Kok to complain about protesters blocking Nathan Road, a major artery in the area.

A handful of people were arrested after fights broke out between anti and pro-Occupy camps, and several of those arrested were found to have triad backgrounds. Many people suspect the triads were hired by the Hong Kong government or sent from Beijing. Some even suspect the police asked them to help clear the roads. Now, it looks as though somebody has written a satirical “declaration” notice from triads to Hong Kong’s student protesters to “set the record straight”.

In fairness, the original in Cantonese is apparently quite funny. The Putonghua translation, which is circulating widely on WeChat today, loses some of the original flavor. We’ve decided to put it into English so you can read it for yourself.

Here’s the letter:

Statement Issued by the Underworld Members of the Triads for All Hong Kong and Kowloon

Yesterday, some of our members showed restraint in the Mong kok area. We didn’t use face masks or anything major, just normal equipment. But starting from now, it will be embarrassing trying to use our normal methods to collect protection money from neighborhoods.

We love Hong Kong and its neighborhood of Mong Kok. However, you have blocked traffic, and not let us go to work. The entertainment industry in this spot is on the verge of bankruptcy. Wandering tourists are nowhere to be seen. All that’s left are you Occupy Central protestors that are taking up Nathan Road.

When we we go out on the street, there is no room for us to walk. We do not hold positions in office, nor are we intellectuals. But, we are all Hong Kongese.

Speak truthfully, we don’t want to take action against you because
we all share the same contacts. After all, we’re all just trying to get by.

You’ve got your recruitment process as do we; you’ve tricked children into doing your bidding just as we have.

The only difference between us is that we have salaries. If there’s a problem, we’ll come help them with life and limb. The word is that you Occupy people don’t get paid, not even bus fare to get around. That’s why there are some things that we can learn from you.

Everybody is doing something illegal. You are able to publicly call people to your cause, publicly attack the police, publicly lay siege to the government. The subway, taxis, the bus system, banks, finance houses…  we have never been able to extend our protection racket to these things. We will have to learn from your example. Through it all, you are still protected by the police! Wow, you guys have some mad ability.

Therefore, there’s something we have to do: we can’t let you get the upper hand. We have to protect our turf, preserve our dignity. This is what we do in the triads.

The TRIAD Society’s Last Stern Declaration

Harassing the police has perennially been the work of our forefathers. Our triad society will never cooperate with the police. A society member that gets into trouble will never seek the help of the police. This is a basic rule of the underworld.

Triad business should be taken care of by triads;
Government business should be taken care of by governments;
And that’s the way it is.

But now, nobody believes this! It’s gotten so bad [accusations triad and police are cooperating in Hong Kong], we’ve had to set the record straight! 

Photo: 1905m


Mainland Tourists, Avoiding Hong Kong, Head to Macau Instead

Posted: 10/7/2014 9:16 am

Tourists walk past a luxury store in Hong Kong

The number of mainland tourists to Macau swelled to 1.2 million in the first four days of the week-long national holiday, surpassing the figures recorded last year as people stay away from Hong Kong as streets remain blocked with protesters.

On October 3, more than 300,000 visitors entered Macau, more than double last year’s 115,800 tourists on the second day of the week-long holiday, according to figures released by Zhuhai Exit and Entry Frontier Inspection Station and Macau Government Tourism Bureau.

Meanwhile there were 157,212 Mainlanders heading to Hong Kong on October 1, a 2 percent decline compared with a year ago, Wall Street Journal reported. China has temporarily suspended visas for tour groups heading to the city because of the unrest.

Anti-occupy protesters beat a protester in Mongkok.

According to figures released by the Hong Kong Immigration Department, 165,685 visitors from mainland China arrived in the city on the second day of the national holiday, a 70 percent decline from last year. It’s a “very low percentage during the Golden Week,” wrote Shenzhen Evening News on October 4.

Pro-Beijing Chinese newspaper Ta Kung Pao said the protests have brought instability and financial losses to the city. ANT bank estimated the protests cost the city HK$2.2 billion of losses in retail, the newspaper reported.

Photos: Alex Ogle/AFP/Getty ImagesTyrone Siu/Reuters



Labor Strife in Macau as City Faces Growing Political Unrest

Posted: 08/27/2014 11:05 am

macau casino protestThe latest of a series of protests by casino workers in Macau not only appears to display a greater willingness to demand better working conditions, but also a growing political awareness as the former colony looks for answers on how to improve governance.

On Monday, more than 1,000 casino workers marched through Macau streets stopping at some of the territory’s biggest casinos such as Sands China, Galaxy Entertainment Group and SJM Holdings. They are demanding a 10 percent pay increase for all workers below the manager’s level, a restriction on hiring foreign workers, and an extension of the smoking ban to cover the entire casino.

The demonstration is said to be the largest of the seven protests held by casino workers this year. The largest on record took place last October with some 3,000 angry workers.

The protests are happening against a backdrop of some political unrest in the city. Over the weekend, an unofficial referendum was scheduled to be held on democracy, one similar to the referendum held by Hong Kong earlier this year. However, local police partially shut down the polls, even though participants could still vote online.

The unofficial referendum poses two questions: whether there should be universal suffrage for the 2019 election for chief executive, and if voters have confidence in Fernando Chui, the current chief executive and only candidate on the ballot for this Sunday’s vote.

For their part, the casino workers union says it is strongly behind the unofficial referendum, which has so far received 6,000 votes. In comparison, Hong Kong, which has a much larger population, received 800,000 in its referendum earlier this summer.

Photo: BBC


Fury In Hong Kong After MTR Train Runs Over Dog As People Tried to Save It

Posted: 08/21/2014 7:22 pm

hong kong dog killed MTR subwayHong Kong residents are outraged at local subway operator MTR, which is being blamed for a number of missteps that culminated in the death of a stray dog after being hit by a train.

The stray dog died when it was hit by the T801 train from Guangzhou at Sheung Shui Station at 10:30am on August 21.

The dog was first spotted around 9:50 in the morning by a commuter, after which train service was halted for six minutes while station personnel tried unsuccessfully to remove the dog from the tracks. The attempts included lowering a chair onto the tracks for the dog to hop onto. Unfortunately, the dog wasn’t rescued in time. After failing to get him off the tracks, train service resumed and the dog was killed a short time later.

In a statement on its Facebook page, the MTR said that it has an official procedure for dealing with this kind of situation:

There are clear guidelines for handling any reported track or unauthorized station entry by animals. In such circumstances, MTR staff will do their best to safely remove the animals while also ensuring the safety of passengers and their own safety at all times.

The incident has sparked a wave of anger among Hong Kong residents, some of whom have interpreted pictures of the stray dog on its hind legs as signalling its intention to climb up out of the tracks.

An online petition has been created, calling for a formal response from the MTR. So far 64,687 people have signed it (English version).

A memorial for the slain dog was held, while another commemoration service and a protest at MTR headquarters is planned.

hong kong dog killed MTR subway

Furthermore, animal rights group the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals has announced its intention to meet with senior staff at the MTR Corporation. MIchael Wong of the SPCA refuted the MTR’s claims that it has an official procedure for dealing with stray animals.

The story of a stray animal wandering onto subway tracks has recalled a case from last year in which the New York City subway system was halted for two hours due to two kittens that were in danger of being struck by moving trains.

The cats were eventually rescued by a police officer.

hong kong dog killed MTR subway

Photos: Facebook, Yahoo


7 People Drink Pesticide, Collapse In Front of China Youth Daily Newspaper

Posted: 07/16/2014 1:25 pm

china youth daily protest 05

Seven people have collapsed after drinking an unknown substance in front of the offices of the China Youth Daily newspaper, reports China Daily.

The incident happened this morning at 8:10 right in front of a sign for paper, a symbolic location of power in Chinese culture. Brown labelled bottles were on the ground beside the bodies and foam was seen coming out of the people’s mouths.

Police don’t know yet what the group drank or why they did it. They have all been sent to hospital. Their current condition is unknown.

china youth daily protest 05

The China Youth Daily sent a Weibo post about the incident at 9:59 am. Besides similar details reported elsewhere, the post goes on to say:

No matter what the reason, life is precious! This newspaper has sent someone to investigate and will disclose all the details. 

On the same post, netizens left these comments:

Hope that these people aren’t in any life-threatening danger. Are they protesting against you, China Youth Daily?

[faint.emo] They want the attention of your newspaper, and hope that you are able to take care of their matter.

They have a lot of faith in your esteemed newspaper.

I’m guessing that they weren’t able to seek an audience, and so now try to attract attention at your newspaper entrance.

china youth daily protest 05china youth daily protest 05china youth daily protest collapse poisonPhotos: China Daily, Sina News

UPDATE 1, 1:35pm July 16: A reporter with Southern Metropolis has confirmed that the victims are a group of petitioners from Jiangsu Province seeking compensation for a forced demolition. They were forcibly detained in a black jail by local officials, and had sought the aid of a higher authority.

Originally from from Qingyuan, Sihong County, the petitioners drank pesticide in protest.

UPDATE 2, 3:40pm July 16: A Jiangsu local official has put himself outside the emergency room door where the victims are being treated, refusing to allow reporters access, reports Caijing.

The Jiangsu official says the patients are to be moved to a hospital on Fengtai East Boulevard for drug tests.


Mainland Passengers “Occupy” Hong Kong Flight in 18-Hour Protest

Posted: 06/24/2014 8:37 pm

hong kong airlines flight hx234When your flight is cancelled, then that’s it: you’re not going anywhere. But for a group of mainland tourists, the decision to “not go anywhere” doesn’t necessarily have to be made by the airline.

It was 9pm on June 20, and the departure of Hong Kong Airlines Flight HX234 from Hong Kong Airport to Shanghai was in jeopardy. The air traffic control at Pudong reported bad weather and ordered the plane to delay take-off.

So the plane waited for permission to depart while still idling at its original position next to the passenger terminal. For hours. At 2am, passengers began to request to leave the plane, but it wasn’t until 3am when the captain announced the flight would be cancelled, a full six hours after the original departure time of 9pm.

At this time, Hong Kong Airlines offered its 276 passengers HK$200 in compensation, dinner and breakfast vouchers, along with a flight to Shanghai later. Around 130 of the already boarded passengers accepted this offer, and disembarked the plane. However, about 70 passengers rejected the terms, and refused to leave.

hong kong airlines flight hx234Here’s where this story takes wildly different turns depending on which side of the Hong Kong-Mainland boundary you’re on.

The People’s Daily reported that the passengers had nothing to eat or drink for the entire 16 hours, during which the air conditioning was reported to have been turned off. The paper said the airline staff also left the plane during the passengers’ protest.

This report refers to the passengers as being “detained; while the passengers were not allowed to leave the flight before it was cancelled at 3am, the passengers refused to leave the plane after 3am once the flight was cancelled.

hong kong airlines flight hx234

On the other hand, the airline states that water was provided to passengers throughout the incident, during which time the air conditioning was on, reports the Hong Kong Standard.

But it gets uglier. Passenger Mr Hua said the protesters were not seeking compensation, but rather wanted to complain about how they were being treated. But airline staff have a different story.

Stewardess Candy Tong made a post on Instagram in which she affirmed that airline staff gave food and drink to the passengers. Furthermore, Tong stated that during the delay, airline staff had lent passengers their own personal cell phone chargers. Passengers used their recharged batteries to take pictures of the flight attendants.

The following photograph was posted to Facebook with the text, “#1320 Thanks for telling me there is no food and drinks in HX 234.”

hong kong airlines flight hx234

The whole standoff finally came to an end at 3pm on the 21st — after passengers had stayed on the flight for a full 18 hours — when Hong Kong Airlines decided to increase compensation to HK$800 per passenger.

Hong Kong Airlines has experienced similar protests by mainland passengers before. Two months ago, 31 passengers refused to leave a flight leaving Bali. Back in 2011, 21 passengers refused to leave a Hong Kong Airlines flight after a nine-hour delay in Singapore. Seventeen passengers refused to leave a flight departing from Shanghai in 2012 after an 18-hour weather delay.

A “language strike” by Hong Kong Airlines flight attendants is now planned for July 1 in which staff will refrain from speaking Putonghua. July 1 is also the annual day of protest in Hong Kong, which also coincides with its handover of sovereignty back to Mainland China.

hong kong flight 234 protest

Photos: People’s Daily, Facebook


Nanfang Week in Review: June 15-June 21

Posted: 06/22/2014 5:00 pm

yulin dog eating festival controversy animal activistsLast week looked just like this here at the Nanfang:


Monday:g-string condom

Tuesday:massage unconscious paralysis shenzhen


Thursday:jiangmen student stabbing teacher

Friday:yulin dog eating festival controversy animal activists

Saturday:marilyn monroe statue giant guigang guangxi

Be sure to check out our Twitter feed @thenanfang as well as our Facebook page!

Photos: the Nanfang


Hong Kong Independence Activist Assaulted Outside Courthouse

Posted: 06/20/2014 1:14 pm

hong kong courthouse assault people first democracy independenceA member of the group “Hong Kong People First” was assaulted as he stood before a courthouse to stand trial for having trespassed upon a People’s Liberation Army military base, reports Sina News.

Zhao Xiancong and other members of Hong Kong People First gathered outside the Eastern Law District Office on June 19 and were shouting slogans like “Independent Hong Kong” and “Long Live Hong Kong”.

Then in full view of reporters at the scene, a middle-aged man suddenly charged at Zhao and struck him twice across the face, shouting in Cantonese, “Are you Chinese? What kind of country are you trying to establish?”

Zhao later stated he does not know the person who assaulted him.

Zhao and three other people, all members of Hong Kong People First, are charged for trespassing upon the Chinese mainland military base stationed in Hong Kong. Last year, on December 26, Zhao and the others burst onto the base waving the flag used by Hong Kong under the British colonial government.

Zhao was sentenced to two weeks in jail and given a suspended prison sentence of 12 month for his role, described as a “ringleader”. Two other people, Zhang Hanxian and Xie Yongwen, were fined HK$2000.

A fourth person was a minor at the time of the incident, and has had their case transferred to juvenile court. They will be tried on June 25.

Hong Kong People First is a group that opposes issues that concern mainland China such as the grey market of smuggling goods across the border.

Hong Kong is becoming more volatile ahead of a vote today on three proposals for full universal suffrage in Hong Kong. Beijing opposes all three options, and has warned a planned protest in Central this summer could destabilize the city.

hong kong courthouse assault people first democracy independencehong kong courthouse assault people first democracy independencehong kong courthouse assault people first democracy independencehong kong courthouse assault people first democracy independencehong kong courthouse assault people first democracy independencehong kong courthouse assault people first democracy independence


Photos: Sina, Southern Metropolis Report 


Guangdong Protests Against Waste Incinerators Turn Violent

Posted: 06/19/2014 3:42 pm

guangdong garbage protestSeveral people were injured and detained when hundreds of homeowners in Panyu, south of Guangzhou, clashed with local authorities during a protest against the construction of a local waste disposal plant, reported Radio Free Asia.

Approximately 1,000 homeowners in the Fairview Peninsula protested on Wednesday by blocking traffic in and out of the facility located less than 20 meters from the local kindergarten.

Eyewitnesses say physical confrontations broke out between the protestors, police, and a large group of “unidentified men”, and that approximately ten protestors were taken away by police.

The homeowners are upset at not having been consulted or made aware of the new waste disposal plant prior to its construction.

A local resident named He said:

“We didn’t know anything about this until they began work on it, when we saw they had flattened that whole area. We feel as though we’ve been duped, and that this isn’t good … for our kids’ health.”

shenzhen smelliest garbage dump protest demonstration

Elsewhere in Guangdong, a protest against another garbage dump took place on Sunday in Shenzhen that also saw police clash with and detain local residents.

The residents of Wanke No. 5 Garden in Shenzhen’s Bantian district were protesting against the Qingshui River Xiaping landfill, which has become notorious lately due to its odor, something residents lampooned by awarding it the “smelliest landfill in history” an an earlier protest this month.

 READ: Students Wear Face Masks to Class to Combat Neigboring Stench

Environmental issues have become the leading cause of social unrest in China, replacing land disputes, Bloomberg has reported. And it’s a problem that is only increasing in scope: every year, China creates more than 360 million tons of waste, an amount that grows by 8% each year, reported China Dialogue.

Other recent Guangdong protests against garbage dumps have become successful. Protests in Puzhai and Shantou have resulted in the closure of waste incinerator plants last August and in January of this year, respectively.

However, other Guangdong citizens have benefited from their visits to Guangdong garbage dumps. Some 10,000 principals and headmasters of Guangdong schools and colleges visited a 78 meter-high landfill site in Guangdong on June 10.

Deputy headmaster Huang Yuying said the visit was a good chance for the educators to see how garbage from large urban areas is dealt with so that they can better teach students about environmental awareness and how to properly sort and dispose of refuse.

An ambulance with medical personnel were on hand during the visit in case visitors became overwhelmed by the smell.


Photos: RFA


Spoofed Google Page Calls On Chinese People To Fight The GFW

Posted: 06/13/2014 10:31 am

google protest great firewall internet censorshipAn image of a Google search page that is spreading like wildfire on Chinese social networks is openly encouraging Chinese internet users to protest against internet censorship in China.

Google is not behind the campaign, however. It’s a campaign launched by It reads as follows [translated from Chinese]:

google protest great firewall internet censorship


If there is no resistance, then there is no freedom

The GFW (The Great Firewall of China) screens and hides all services provided by Google including scientific research important to Google academics. If you feel that this is unacceptable, please forward this page on your Weibo and WeChat accounts. At the beginning of 2013 when the GFW closed off access to Github (code-sharing websites), a majority of programmers complained on Weibo and in work correspondence letters until finally the GFW was re-opened. If there is no resistance, there is no freedom! We request everyone to please forward this webpage to put pressure on the GFW!

We recommend that you please add this to your web browser bookmarks, or to please remember the URL address If there are some webpages that cannot be visited, then please send your feedback to [email protected] and please specify the URL and current version of web browser used.

Another similar version of this webpage can be seen here, and substitutes the URL address as

Google services were most recently targeted in China just before the anniversary of the Tiananmen Square incident, reports Bloomberg.

The company’s online presence has been censored in China since 2010 when it announced it would no longer comply with government regulations and redirected users to its Hong Kong site.

Correction: An initial version of this story claimed that Google was calling on Chinese people to fight the Great Firewall. That is incorrect. Google is not involved with this campaign in any way, to the best of our knowledge.

[h/t @missxq]

Photos: Google

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