Asia

Pro-Beijing lawmaker stabbed by 'fake supporter' in Hong Kong

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Media caption'Die, Junius Ho!': The moment a controversial Hong Kong lawmaker is stabbed

A pro-Beijing lawmaker in Hong Kong has been stabbed in the street by a man pretending to be a supporter.

In footage posted online, a man is seen approaching Junius Ho with flowers before reaching into a bag - saying he wants a picture - but instead lunging at Mr Ho with a knife.

Mr Ho, who was wounded, and others then wrestle him to the ground.

The stabbing is the latest in a series of attacks on people on either side of the Hong Kong protests.

In July, pro-democracy protesters accused Mr Ho of helping to organise attacks on civilians in Yuen Long station.

Dozens of masked men dressed in white shirts - suspected to be triad gangsters - assaulted pro-democracy protesters and passers-by.

Afterwards, Mr Ho reportedly said the attackers were "defending their home and people", but denied any involvement.

He was also seen shaking hands with the attackers and giving them the thumbs-up.

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Media captionA large group of masked men in white T-shirts stormed Yuen Long station

What happened in Wednesday's attack?

Mr Ho was campaigning for Hong Kong's elections, being held later this month, when a man in a blue t-shirt and wearing a back-to-front baseball cap approached him.

The man apparently said "everyone has seen your efforts", before Mr Ho took the flowers.

The "supporter" then said "let me take my mobile out" before reaching into his bag and stabbing Mr Ho. He was then wrestled to the ground by a group of people, including Mr Ho.

The lawmaker was then seen being taken into an ambulance. Two other people were also reportedly hurt.

Police said a suspect had been arrested, and that all three victims were conscious.

After the attack, Mr Ho released a statement in which he said "black forces" were targeting pro-establishment candidates.

"I will remain courageous and fearless," he said.

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Hong Kong lawmaker Junius Ho, pictured in July

Who else has been attacked in Hong Kong?

Hong Kong's protests - which started in June - now flare up every weekend, with clashes between protesters and police getting increasingly violent.

Shops and businesses seen as being pro-Beijing are also regularly attacked.

At the same time, attacks on groups and individuals, often away from the main protests, have also increased.

Last weekend, at least five people were injured in a knife attack at a pro-democracy protest in a shopping mall. A local councillor had his ear partially bitten off while trying to stop the attacker leaving.

Last month, activist Jimmy Sham was attacked by a group of five men with hammers.

The Hong Kong Free Press says at least three other candidates in November's elections have also been attacked in recent weeks.

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Media captionKnife attack amidst protests in Hong Kong shopping mall

Who is Junius Ho?

Mr Ho is a 57-year-old lawyer who became a member of Hong Hong's Legislative Council in 2016.

He attended Anglia Ruskin University in the UK, which awarded him an honorary doctorate in 2011. However, the university removed the honour last month after pressure online and from politicians.

"Mr Ho's conduct since he was honoured has caused increasing concern," the university said.

In 2017 he was accused of saying protesters should be "killed" - but later said his words had been mistranslated - and was also accused of linking homosexuality to bestiality.

After he was accused of supporting the Yuen Long attacks, his office was attacked and his parents' graves vandalised.

Image copyright Reuters
Image caption A pro-government supporter is attacked by an anti-extradition supporter outside the office of Junius Ho in July

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