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Hong Kong cops target activists

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HONG KONG Police cracked down on Hong Kong democracy activists yesterday, saying they would be charged over the Umbrella Movement mass protests of 2014, a day after a pro-Beijing candidate was chosen as the city's new leader.

Police informed several leading campaigners who took part in the 2014 movement that they would be charged in connection with the rallies, which saw tens of thousands take to the streets calling for fully free leadership elections but failed to win concessions from Beijing.

Civic Party lawmaker Tanya Chan told AFP she had received a call from police on Friday morning telling her she would be charged with causing a public nuisance.

She said she had been arrested immediately after the protests, but had never been charged. She was to report to a police station yesterday evening and will go to court on Thursday.

She added that she would take responsibility for participation in "civil disobedience activity", but said the timing undermined Chief Executive-elect Carrie Lam's unity pledge.

Ms Lam did not directly respond on whether the move would further divide Hong Kong.

"Prosecution actions are undertaken independently by the department of justice," she said.

She repeated that she wanted unity, but said her approach "should not compromise the rule of law in Hong Kong".- AFP

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