Dozens Arrested In Fresh Hong Kong Clashes

Dozens of protesters have been arrested by police in Hong Kong after a night of clashes in the Mong Kok district of the city.

Police said 28 people, the youngest aged 16, were detained for offences including unlawful assembly and possession of offensive weapons.

It is understood the pro-democracy protesters had attempted to retake an area of Argyle Street which they had previously occupied for nine weeks.

The protesters, in their hundreds, began to arrive in Mong Kok in the Kowloon district late on Friday night.

Police in riot gear urged them to disperse or face arrest. Running scuffles ensued with water bottles and eggs thrown at officers who responded with batons and pepper spray.

First aiders treated those with injuries which included head wounds, grazes and the effects of pepper spray.

Protesters chanted: “I want genuine universal suffrage”, a reference to their demand for full democratic rights in Hong Kong.

At present, the people of Hong Kong can only vote for a political leader selected from candidates chosen by the Chinese central government in Beijing.

The protest movement is calling for the right to choose their own leader, or Chief Executive, in 2017 without any interference from Beijing.

The clashes come as authorities continue to struggle to find a solution to the impasse.

The city government has refused to meet protesters’ demands, who have in turn refused to ease their movement of civil disobedience.

Although certain sections of the three protest sites have been cleared through court orders and without significant resistance, the main protest site in Admiralty on Hong Kong Island remains in place.

Hundreds of tents cover the six-lane highway. Protesters, most of whom are students, have set up work stations and food kiosks.

Makeshift steps allow people to move over the central reservation of what is normally an arterial highway through the city.

Now entering its 10th week, the protest site is quiet by day with many of the tents empty. At night, students leave school and university and congregate in Admiralty.

Among the 8 million people of Hong Kong, support for the pro-democracy movement is increasingly tempered by the continued disruption it is causing.

Sky News spoke to one taxi driver who didn’t identify himself but who admits to having increasing mixed views.

“At first it was good. Now it’s gone on too long,” he said as he negotiated road blocks around Admiralty.

His son, a student studying management at university, spends every night at the protest site.

“My son is there, protesting. Last night he went to Mong Kok. They are fighting for their future in Hong Kong,” he explained.

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29 November 2014 | 7:53 am – Source:


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