The press conference was held by the Hong Kong police to address the Wednesday, June 12 clashes outside the Legislative Council building.
Some reporters were seen wearing yellow reflective high-visibility vests -- the yellow vest has become a symbol of protest beyond France where it started -- while one even wore a gas mask.
Many reporters wore reflective jackets, helmets and gas masks in protest of police brutality against front line press during the Hong Kong police press conference just now. pic.twitter.com/tzC8imiA6k— Richard Lai (@richardlai) June 13, 2019
Top trolling from HK reporters: wearing helmets and gas masks to an indoor police press conference pic.twitter.com/ZbGPBFZnZM— Jacky Wong (@jackycwong) June 13, 2019
Reporters are our "friends"
While Hong Kong police commissioner Stephen Lo Wai-chung apologised for the "impolite" treatment some reporters received while their bags were searched, he insisted his officers would never target their "reporter friends".
He also fumbled while trying to justify why police officers arrested protestors who were receiving treatment at hospitals after clashing with the police.
May I recap the best bit of #HongKong #police chief Stephen Lo’s presser: “I know arresting people in hospital may sound, err, err, err, err, err.— Damon Pang (@damon_pang) June 13, 2019
Errr....I cant find the right word....." #HongKongProtests #ExtraditionLaw pic.twitter.com/qFE2oQOYrr
When he finally found the words, he said:
"Wherever they can arrest (the protestors), they will do so and will not wait until they come out (from the hospital).
We just doing our duty."
Lo asked reporters not to laugh
At one point, when Lo told the reporters that he has always been polite to the press, the room broke out in laughter.
Lo then said:
"Please don't laugh."
"I understand that some of you might have had certain experiences or hold certain views, but the Hong Kong police force is committed to maintaining a good relationship with the press."
The police response at the press conference was widely criticised online.
Reporters claimed police were unnecessarily violent towards them
Many reporters had claimed the police deliberately obstructed their work, with one saying an officer replied "f**k your mother" to him when he displayed his press pass.
The Hong Kong Journalists Association (HKJA) released a statement on June 12, saying it has received more than 15 complaints from journalists on the violation of their rights.
Some of the allegations included accusing reporters with valid press pass of possessing offensive weapons and searching their bags, as well as targeting retreating reporters with pepper spray, resulting in burns on their hands and back.
Police treatment of the protestors and reporters have sparked fears that civil liberties are quickly being eroded in the city.
Protestors took care of reporters present
In another viral video uploaded by CBSNews reporter Ramy Inocencio, protestors were seen handing him an umbrella and a helmet in the aftermath of the firing of tear gas by the police.
Hong Kong's youth protestors are kind. I post this clip to say thanks. @CBSrandy was rolling when the police fired tear gas at the group we were in. An umbrella and helmet were forced on me. I'll prob never know who they are but I'm so grateful for their care. #HongKongProtests pic.twitter.com/NNAsFjpXOP— Ramy Inocencio 英若明 (@RamyInocencio) June 13, 2019
Top image via EyePress Images