Agents charge to dissolve protests in two university areas and in the downtown district
HONG KONG, Nov. 12 (Reuters / EP) –
The Hong Kong Police on Tuesday launched tear gas to disperse anti-government protesters concentrated in the city's financial district and two university campuses in the former British colony.
The charges of the agents arrive a day after a policeman fired at close range against a protester and after a man was sprayed with oil and set on fire, within the framework of one of the biggest waves of violence in Hong Kong.
A march of about 1,000 people, many of them dressed in office suits and masks, has toured the central district of Hong Kong for the second day during lunch time, blocking several of the roads next to the biggest skyscrapers and properties most expensive in the city.
After the protesters have dispersed, the police have launched gases against those that were concentrated in the narrow Pedder street and arrested more than a dozen of them.
Police have deployed vans in the area and officers have positioned themselves in front of the protesters just an hour before the district workers left their jobs at the end of their workday.
“Our society has been brought to the threshold of a total rupture,” said a police spokesman, in an appearance with journalists, referring to the last two days of violence. The police spokesman has indicated that the man who was set on fire is still in critical condition and has requested information about the person responsible for this attack.
Police on Monday threw tear gas in the central district of Hong Kong, where some protesters had blocked several streets where there are banks and jewelry stores. Most of the establishments have decided to close their doors on Tuesday.
The tension has subsided when lunch is over but some protesters have used a double-decker bus to block a key road that runs from the port to the city center.
Police have also used tear gas to disperse protesters in the university town in Kowloon Tong, under Lion Rock Hill, and at the University of China, on the other side of the mountain, where protesters have thrown molotov cocktails and bricks at the Police.
Protesters concentrated in the university city have accumulated bricks and Molotov cocktails on bridges and other access roads, placing small devices with nails to puncture the tires of vehicles that want to access the area.
The university has denounced that some people have entered a warehouse and have taken bows, arrows and javalinas but then that material has been recovered. “It's crazy that the police have been tearing gas for more than 20 minutes. If they don't come in, we wouldn't have faced them. It's our school. We have to protect our home,” Candy, a 20-year-old student, told Reuters.
The head of the Hong Kong Regional Executive, Carrie Lam, has denounced that protesters are being extremely selfish and has trusted that schools and universities place students not to participate in mobilizations against the Executive.
On Monday, Hong Kong authorities arrested more than 260 people, police said, raising the balance to more than 3,000 detainees since protests increased in June.
On Tuesday, the spokesman for the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Geng Shuang, has called on the United Kingdom and the United States not to interfere in the internal affairs of their country. “The Central Government strongly supports the Government (of Hong Kong) in its implementation of the policies in accordance with the legislation, supporting the Hong Kong Police in imposing the law, maintaining social order and protecting the safety of citizens “, said Geng, at a press conference at the headquarters of his department in Beijing.
“The issues of Hong Kong are basically internal affairs of China that does not allow foreign interference. We are moving to the United States, the United Kingdom and other countries that seriously respect China's sovereignty,” said the Foreign spokesman. China has a contingent of up to 12,000 soldiers in Hong Kong to protect military quarters against protesters.