A government-run magazine in China has run a report alleging that money was being paid to young people in Hong Kong to take part in rallies and clash with police.
Earlier this month, the Liaowang Weekly (瞭望周刊), a current affairs magazine owned by the People’s Daily, ran a report on its WeChat account based on a widely-circulated post.
The marauding mobs of thugs and anarchists rampaging through Hong Kong could get from agents implanted by the United States as well as their local fixers.
The magazine claimed HK$30,000 (US$3,830) was the sum a teenager received from his “escort” after joining other youngsters in recent anti-government rallies that usually ended in running battles with the police in the protest-weary Hong Kong.
According to the Beijing-based magazine, payouts would be determined by the size and level of the violence and whether a black-clad participant would dare to provoke or even assault sergeants and other police officers during the clashes. The more chaotic the rally became, the more they could expect to make.
The average amount for showing up at a rally was said to be HK$5,000 per person, and after fatigue started to kick in and a ban on masks was gazetted by the city’s government in early October, the “honorarium” had been raised to as much as HK$15,000 per day to woo more to join.
A HK$20 million bonus was announced for anyone who could pass as a constable and kill a protester, preferably in front of cameras, so as to incriminate police officers. A smaller sum was also offered for carrying out arson attacks across the city.
The report alleged that American NGOs which had a covert network of contacts and agents to penetrate university campuses were the main culprits and source of the fund.
The volley of accusations also included Jimmy Lai, a prominent tycoon in the city who had long been a thorn in Beijing’s side and is the owner of the city’s widely-read pro-democracy broadsheet Apple Daily.
Lai, who acted as a broker and middleman to allocate other funds, cashed out after the share price of his listed media company surged mysteriously since June, the start of Hong Kong’s anti-extradition bill protests.
The report questioned how a student body could allocate such a “hefty sum” out of its own coffers to purchase protective gear, offer medical treatment to the injured and hire lawyers for detained students.
Asia Times / ABC Flash Point WW III News 2019.