Its use may help reduce casualties, but that does not make it safe…..As the protests in Hong Kong drag on, rituals are coalescing. One oft-repeated rite might be dubbed “the unfurling of the banner”. As confrontation looms, from the masked ranks of police two step forward bearing a sign reading “Warning: Tear Smoke”, in Chinese and English. Then the firing starts, and clouds swirl, stinging and choking. Aside from a few wearing masks, the crowd scatters, with the police in pursuit.

Many demonstrators have experienced something like it. Indeed, Hong Kong is a relatively modest user. In the first five months of protests, its police fired nearly 6,000 rounds of tear-gas—far fewer than were used in Paris in a single day last December against gilets jaunes (yellow-jacket) protesters.

Courtesy indian express..