Hong Kong courtroom guidelines masks the constitutional prohibition on all public gatherings by Reuters

HONG KONG (Reuters) – Hong Kong’s Supreme Court ruled Monday that the city’s government had the right to use colonial emergency powers to require the wearing of masks at all public processions and gatherings during the height of the protests in the past year Ban 2019.

As the anti-government protests largely subsided, many protesters wore masks to hide their identities from the authorities and to protect themselves from tear gas.

Surgical masks have long been the norm in the financial center as well, when people are sick and the verdict comes at a time when Hong Kong people are required to wear masks to curb the spread of COVID-19.

The appeals court went further than a lower court ruling in April that upheld the government’s right to impose emergency measures but found the mask ban unconstitutional.

Opposition lawmakers and activists in the former British colony filed a judicial review of the anti-masks law last year.

One of Hong Kong’s most prominent democracy activists, 24-year-old Joshua Wong was arrested for allegedly violating the Anti-Mask Act and participating in an illegal anti-government rally in 2019.

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