UNITED STATES, WASHINGTON (VOP TODAY NEWS) — Police in Hong Kong used tear gas against pro-democracy protesters on Sunday, despite not being authorized to challenge the authorities in the wake of violent incidents during another banned demonstration in a city near the border with China.
The crowd gathered in the city center on Sunday afternoon, while police only allowed to demonstrate in a park in Hong Kong and prevented marches in the city.
The protesters soon dispersed in the streets of the city, threatening new confrontations as the protest movement against the pro-Beijing government in Hong Kong entered its eighth week.
Some protesters marched east toward the commercial district of Causeway Bay, where they erected barricades and cut off a main road, with shops and shopping centers closed.
Another group of demonstrators marched west toward the Chinese liaison office in Hong Kong, which is being guarded by a large group of riot police. Police used tear gas against protesters near the office.
Television footage showed riot police firing tear gas at protesters who had raised barriers near the circle.
Last Sunday, demonstrators threw eggs at the building and painted slogans on its facade. Beijing condemned the violence as “totally unacceptable” and called for “punishment of the guilty.”
“I feel torn, I see young people sacrificing their future for Hong Kong,” Marcos, 22, told AFP.
On Saturday, violent incidents broke out in the city of Yuenlong near the border with China, with the end of a banned demonstration involving tens of thousands of people.
They protested peacefully against suspected members of criminal gangs of pro-democracy activists a week ago, injuring 45 people, medical sources said.
On Saturday, clashes broke out between a group of masked demonstrators and riot police who used tear gas and rubber bullets before using batons against the last demonstrators.
At the railway station, where gang attacks were reported last week, traces of blood were seen on the ground after violent clashes.
– A challenge to Beijing –
Medical sources said 24 people were injured, including two seriously.
Police announced Sunday the arrest of 13 people. Among those arrested, Max Chong, the young activist who launched the call to allow the demonstration in Yuenlong. He was arrested to incite an illegal gathering.
Last Sunday’s attack on the Chinese government’s liaison office was a new challenge to Beijing’s city authority after the parliament was vandalized earlier this week.
“The use of force on both sides is intensifying but there is great inequality,” said pro-democracy MP Claudia Mo. “The police have lethal weapons.”
Hong Kong, an international financial hub, has been the worst crisis in recent history since June 9.
Millions have participated in peaceful demonstrations against the pro-Beijing local government, while sporadic clashes between extremist protesters and police have occurred in parallel.
The protest movement began mainly with the rejection of a law allowing extradition to China. Despite the suspension of the law, the protest movement expanded to include calls for democratic reforms on the back of concern over Beijing’s increasing interference in the internal affairs of the former British colony, which was returned to China in 1997.
Condemning “absolutely unacceptable” violence, China has left local authorities to tackle the crisis.
This article is written and prepared by our foreign editors writing for VOP from different countries around the world – edited and published by VOP staff in our newsroom.
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