ith their school besieged by police, dozens of student protesters at Hong Kong Polytechnic University staged a daring escape on Monday night.
The school in the area of Hung Hom, at the southern tip of Kowloon, has become the center of the city’s pro-democracy protests as police have surrounded the campus over the past two days, trapping hundreds of students inside with dwindling supplies.
When attempting to escape or break through the police blockade, most protesters have either been driven back by tear gas or arrested, often aggressively, by police who have designated all those inside the campus as rioters.
On Monday evening, however, a number of them apparently managed to escape by rappelling down from a bridge onto a road below where motorbikes were waiting to whisk them away.
According to reporters on the scene, at least 50 protesters got out this way before the route was closed by police
This was probably the most surreal thing I have ever witnessed in the Hong Kong protests. Protesters just attempted a daring escape through a bridge at Polytechnic University. Volunteers on motorbikes came in drives to drive them out asap. Police fired teargas. #HongKongProtests pic.twitter.com/huhSo3Mxo9
— Michael Zhang 張雨軒 (@YuxuanMichael) November 18, 2019
Dramatic getaway of some #PolyU protesters, who abseiled down from a bridge, and sped away on the backs of motorbikes that came out of nowhere on a flyover. Police pelted them with tear gas and projectiles as they perched on precarious ledges #HK #HongKongProtest pic.twitter.com/8vBBzhmGF0
— James Pomfret (@jamespomfret) November 18, 2019
Great escape from PolyU police lockdown #HongkongProtests
Via WhatsApp pic.twitter.com/eHGjZkin2W
— Claudia Mo 毛孟靜 (@ClaudiaMCMo) November 18, 2019
The situation at PolyU has inspired in protesters what some are calling the “Spirit of Dunkirk” with thousands rushing to the area and attempting to break the police blockade, resulting in yet more violence and arrests.
In the early morning hours of Tuesday, there still remains a small group of students holding out inside the university campus.