Hong Kong to observe 3 minutes of silence to honour late China leader Jiang Zemin

Schools at different levels have also made special class arrangements after the Education Bureau requested they suspend all celebratory activities and suggested arranging students watch the live broadcast of the funeral on campus.

Chu Wai-lam, principal at Fung Kai No 1 Primary School, said the school would play video biographies of Jiang before watching the funeral service.

“We will avoid any celebratory elements in lessons tomorrow. For example, in music lessons we won’t be singing festive songs,” he said.

Chu added all students would then sign a book of condolence, which would be displayed near the school gate.

Lo Siu-yin, principal at May Nga Kindergarten, said pupils would observe a 20-second period of silence on Tuesday, instead of three minutes, considering the challenge of keeping young children still for an extended time. The school however would not watch the funeral service due to insufficient broadcast equipment, she added.

“It’s not that difficult for children to understand who Jiang was as they are very familiar with [the current leader] President Xi Jinping,” she said. “We will also tell children the meaning of grieving, when someone who’s made great contributions to our country passed away, we should mourn his death, the same way we grieve the loss of our family members.”

Also joining the three minutes of silence will be the English Schools Foundation, the largest international school organisation in the city.

All schools, as well as government premises in the city and abroad are required to fly their flags at half-mast, while official vessels should also sound their horn for three minutes.

In an internal circular, the Hospital Authority called on staff members to pay tribute to the late president.

“Where practicable and not affecting clinical or patient services, colleagues should observe the three-minute’s mourning in silence by standing at their work station or area in a dignified manner, and not engage in any form of activity during the period,” it said.

An authority spokesman stressed all emergency and non-emergency services would continue to function normally.

The judiciary said all judges, judicial officers and staff members – except those providing emergency services – would join the commemoration, with court proceedings and services to be adjourned and suspended. Court hearings originally scheduled for 10am would be pushed back for three minutes, it added.

With the administration’s appeal for entertainment and celebration activities to be postponed, three shopping malls under Sino Group – Olympian City, Tuen Mun Town Plaza and Citywalk – said the live broadcast of four World Cup matches from Monday night to the early hours of Wednesday would be cancelled.

Nine Mall and Central Market under Chinachem Group would do the same for three matches for two days from Monday, with the latter also switching off Christmas lights and suspending some entertainment events until Tuesday night.

The iconic symphony of lights will be suspended on Tuesday, with festive lights on the facades of some buildings across Victoria Harbour switched off, including Tsim Sha Tsui Centre and Empire Centre. The “Hong Kong WinterFest” by the West Kowloon Cultural District would similarly be suspended.

The mourning hall, which has been set up at Beijing’s liaison office in Sai Wan since last Thursday, would stop receiving visitors on the day of the state funeral.

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