Mass anti-government protests in Hong Kong threaten to cause transport nightmare (PHOTOS, VIDEO)
Weeks-long protests in Hong Kong over a controversial extradition bill escalated on Sunday. Protesters tried to block major tunnels as well as taking aim at public transport networks and crucial industries.
The protests continue in Hong Kong for the ninth weekend in a row. Sunday night has seen violent altercations between law enforcement and demonstrators who tried to block traffic and besiege police stations throughout the city. Over 20 people were arrested for various offenses, including assault and participation in unlawful assemblies.
Earlier Sunday was no less turbulent, as an authorized march of the anti-extradition bill protesters yet again turned into scuffles with the police. As the peaceful procession ended some of the protesters blocked roads in the town of Tseung Kwan O in the New Territories, erected barricades and pelted a local police station with stones and other objects.
Police, in turn, responded with tear gas. Law enforcement had to deal with several simultaneous unauthorized gatherings throughout the region, deploying the gas in at least one more location during a separate rally in the island's Western district.
The protesters spray painted traffic lights in an attempt to render them inoperable to disrupt the city’s car flow, as well as blocked major roads, including the Cross-Harbour Tunnel, that links Hong Kong island and Kowloon peninsula.
Several police vehicles were blocked by the crowds of protesters, who spray painted the cars and pelted them with various projectiles, footage from the scene shows.
While the controversial extradition bill has been suspended amid the unrest, the protesters now demand the legislation to be scrapped altogether, as well as call for more “democracy” in the autonomous region. The protests are likely to spill over into Monday when a general strike – ‘advertised’ as the 8/5 Strike – is set to take place.
The city is likely to face a major disruption, with air travel heavily affected as well. Many flight departures are already shown as cancelled for Monday.
“This is a citywide strike. Judging from the 1 million turnout for the June 9 march, I reckon the number of people joining the strike might reach 500,000,” Carol Ng Man-yee, chairwoman of pro-democracy Confederation of Trade Unions (CTU), said as quoted by the South China Morning Post newspaper.Also on rt.com Ninth protest rally in Hong Kong: Tear gas, throwing stones, clashes with police (PHOTOS, VIDEO)
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