People who crossed over a bridge in the Kwai Chung neighbourhood in Hong Kong last week got to see some pretty surprising Christmas decorations. Anonymous Hong Kong residents had festooned it with paper ornaments, some featuring the heads of various members of the government transposed onto the bodies of cockroaches.

This Hong Kong resident found the decorations amusing.


The politicians featured on the bridge include Leung Chun-ying, the former Chief Executive of Hong Kong; Norman Chan, the former Chief Executive of the Hong Kong Monetary Authority and, of course, Carrie Lam, the controversial current Chief Executive, whose head was posted onto a body wearing lingerie.

The image on the right features Leung Chuny-ying, the former Chief Executive of Hong Kong.

This image is of Norman Chan, the former Chief Executive of the Hong Kong Monetary Authority, which is Hong Kong’s central bank.


Pro-democracy protesters are extremely critical of Carrie Lam (above), the current Chief Executive of Hong Kong.

The decorations were hung from this bridge in this neighbourhood in Hong Kong that is sometimes referred to as "Lennon Bridge", an allusion to the "Lennon Wall" built in Prague in 1980 after the assasination of ex-Beatle John Lennon that year. In Hong Kong, people often cover "Lennon Walls" with Post-its marked with anti-government and anti-Beijing messages.

Some of the decorative figures are more symbolic, like the man in a helmet who represents the Hong Kong police, who frequently clash with protesters, sometimes violently.

This figure represents the Hong Kong police, who regularly clash with protesters.

The choice to pair some of the politicians with cockroach bodies isn’t random. The Hong Kong police openly refer to protesters as “cockroaches”.

In late August, Facebook deleted more than a thousand accounts suspected of being part of a Chinese campaign to discredit the protesters. Some of the posts referred to protesters as "cockroaches that should be squished”.

Not everyone on social media is a fan of these decorations. Quite a few pro-Chinese users took to Weibo, the Chinese equivalent of Twitter, to express their outrage and indignation.

This post insults the people behind the decorations. Below is a hashtag supporting the Hong Kong police.

Supporters of the government didn’t hesitate to remove the hanging figures from the bridge.

Though they were only hung up last week, the figures have already been removed from the bridge.

Article by Marie Genries (@mariegnrs).