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“Do Not Go to Wan Chai”


Reuters reports on the violence outside as the anti-trade protesters battle police in an attempt to get into the conference.

The Hong Kong Secretary for Security just gave an ad hoc press conference that was broadcast here in the media center. He warned Hong Kong citizens against going to Wan Chai (the part of town where the Hong Kong convention center is located). Police are also not letting anyone out of the building because of the violence.

“This afternoon, the WTO demonstrators have shown their true colors by resorting to violence, breaking the law and disobeying the instruction and cooperation of our police officers,” he said.

Bad news: I’m stuck here. Good news: So are the delegates. Maybe with nowhere to go, they will quit stalling and make more progress.

UPDATE: I just got back from the lobby, which is full of riot police telling us to go back upstairs. It looks like my dinner plans (McDonalds) will have to change. When I got back to the press center, I saw a bunch of people running around, which made me think I was missing some important announcement. Turns out, there was a rumor going around that some of the protesters had gotten into the convention center. But it was just a rumor. I think.

UPDATE II: For the don’t-tell-Kathryn file: I was going to take the ferry to Macau tonight and play a little poker at the new Sands casino that just opened up there. Guess that’s out too. I don’t even have a deck to start a game in the press center.

It was bad enough when the protesters were just advocating anti-globalization policies that would keep the developing world mired in poverty. Now its personal.


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