Video of mainlander assaulted in Hong Kong sparks outrage in China
HONG KONG: Video of a Chinese bank employee being punched by a Hong Kong democracy supporter as a crowd chanted "go home" has caused outrage on the mainland, highlighting widening polarisation in the financial hub.
Footage shot by both reporters and protesters showed a white-shirted man being punched repeatedly outside the entrance to JPMorgan Chase by a masked protester on the sidelines of a rally in Hong Kong's commercial district on Friday.
Bloomberg News reported that the man worked for the American bank, which said it was boosting security outside its offices in an internal memo sent to staff.
Footage begins with the man, who speaks Mandarin, surrounded by media photographers as an angry crowd chants, "Go back to the mainland".
He makes his way through the press scrum to the door of his office building before turning to the crowd and shouting, "We are all Chinese".
Shortly after, a masked man punches him multiple times, knocking off his glasses.
The clip has gone viral in China, where news about Hong Kong is strictly censored.
One version of the video on the Weibo platform describing the attacked JP Morgan worker as "very brave", had received more than 11.2 million views and 91,000 likes by yesterday morning.
"Just because he speaks Mandarin and thinks, 'We are all Chinese', why should he be punched and have his glasses knocked off?" asked one commentator under the name Aubrey.
"You have to pull up the roots (of Hong Kong) and leave nothing behind. They have had enough tolerance," another added.
Some comments hit out at a photographer who appeared to block the door to the office to take pictures. - AFP