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Saturday, Feb 24, 2024

Ten marches held under controversial restrictions on Sun

Ten marches held under controversial restrictions on Sun

Multiple participants of an Easter Hat Parade left the march after they were told masks are not allowed under police regulations, amid the Force has recently drawn criticism over the limits imposed on the city's demonstrations.
The hat parade is one of the ten rallies held on Sunday that were given the Letter of No Objection by the police force. However, participants were required to follow a number of rules, including wearing badges or ribbons as identifying items, along with masks off.

About 700 participants who wore their own hats or those given out by the organizers joined the event. The organizers and the plainclothes police officers reminded the participants to take off their masks at the starting line of the march.

Some participants left the march after being reminded, saying they did not know about the ban.

The group started marching from East Coast Park Precinct in Fortress Hill and ended the march at Wan Chai HarbourChill.

A similar incident also happened in a religious march held by St. John's Cathedral on Sunday, where multiple Catholics wore masks or had their faces covered when joining a Palm Sunday march, though law enforcement did not take any action.

The marchers were also required to wear red ribbons on their arms and carry palm branches.

Secretary for Security Chris Tang Ping-keung said the measures were based on risk assessments to control the number of rally participants and identify them so that the rallies would not be hijacked by lawbreakers.
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