Police shot tear gas and sprayed water from water cannons into the compound of the Tung Shin Hospital along Jalan Pudu, according to two of its staff, in order to disperse the crowd from the Bersih 2.0 rally yesterday.
One of the staff who is in charge of ambulance management, said that the police fired tear gas three times. He added the spray from the water cannons was unable to reach the main hospital, but hit a building in the compound.
The middle-aged man who wanted to remain anonymous, said that the police started firing tear gas towards a group of people who gathered in front of the Chinese medicine hospital and the male staff hostel which are located beside the main building.
The police then broke into the compound and start arresting people, while some of the protesters successfully fled to the small hill beside Tung Shin Hospital to avoid arrest, he said when interviewed by Malaysiakini.
The inspector-general of police Ismail Omar and Kuala Lumpur acting police chief Amar Singh, have denied that the riot police fired tear gas into the premises of Tung Shin hospital.
However, Malaysiakini has received many photos from the public showing the police spraying water and shooting tear gas shells into the compound, to rebut the claims of the police.
The Tung Shin staff member said that the protesters were cornered by the Federal Reserve Unit who sealed off both ends of the road.
He said they were forced to flee into Tung Shin hospital because they were unable to get into the Plaza Rakyat abandoned project site which is right opposite the hospital.
He thought that the police could have done better to avoid the hospital getting involved.
"If the police could drive out the crowd from Masjid Jamek to the hospital, they could also drive out them further away. There's no need to for the hospital to be involved in a siege. But they left the crowd no choice, but to head for the hospital," he added.
He stressed that although there were more than 500 people at the scene, they behaved well without being noisy or destroying anything.
"They know this is a hospital, hence their actions were very respectful in order to let the hospital can operate as usual.
"There was some chaos when the police start firing tear gas. They hid inside the hospital, and waited quietly until the gas was gone," he added.
One of the ambulance drivers of the hospital also said that the crowd behaved peacefully in front of the hospital, but many of them rushed into the toilet to wash their faces in order to ease the pain of the tear gas.
He said that the hospital didn't suffer any losses and the incident didn't cause any impact to the patients.
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