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The Latest: Hong Kong police battle protesters with tear gas

Posted at 12:25 AM, Jul 28, 2019
and last updated 2019-07-28 12:00:04-04

HONG KONG (AP) — The Latest on protests in Hong Kong (all times local):

9:05 p.m.

Police in Hong Kong have appealed to people to stay indoors with their windows shut as officers use tear gas to try to drive protesters from the streets.

Chaotic scenes filled several blocks in the western part of Hong Kong island Sunday night as police pushed the protesters back and away from the Chinese government’s liaison office and a police station.

Protesters threw eggs at the liaison office last weekend and splattered paint on China’s national emblem.

The demonstrators are demanding direct elections for the semi-autonomous Chinese territory’s leader, the resignation of the current leader and an investigation into police use of force to quell earlier protests.


7:40 p.m.

Police in Hong Kong have fired tear gas at protesters for the second night in a row.

The protesters had used barricades to block a major street Sunday afternoon near the Chinese government’s liaison office for the city. 

After a few hours, they tried to move the barriers forward. Police issued warnings, protesters threw eggs at them and the police fired tear gas.

Hong Kong has had a series of pro-democracy and anti-government rallies and marches this summer, many of which have ended in showdowns between police and protesters who occupy streets or throw eggs at and spray-paint slogans on government buildings.


6:35 p.m.

A group of protesters has used orange and white construction barricades to build a wall spanning a major Hong Kong road near the Chinese government’s Liaison Office for the city.

They massed behind the barriers Sunday evening, with umbrellas pointed forward to shield their identities and ward off any police move to clear them from the street.

Police in riot gear have gathered nearby, and some stores have shuttered early.

Hong Kong has had a series of pro-democracy and anti-government rallies and marches this summer, many of which have ended in showdowns between police and protesters who occupy streets or throw eggs at and spray-paint slogans on government buildings.


5:35 p.m.

Protesters in Hong Kong have begun taking over a main street in a major shopping district.

They marched to the Causeway Bay district on Sunday after rallying in a nearby park. Some used steel barricades and other large items to block off the area near Sogo department store.

Similar occupations in recent protests have ended in clashes with police when officers tried to clear the area. On Saturday, police used tear gas and rubber bullets in a protest that left at least two dozen people injured.

Two other groups of protesters appeared to head to different areas on Sunday, including Hong Kong’s Sheung Wan district. The police had turned down an application to march to Sheung Wan. No request was made to go to Causeway Bay.


5 p.m.

The Chinese government has accused an American lawmaker of telling “bare-faced lies and slinging mud” in recent comments he made about ongoing protests in Hong Kong.

A response posted Sunday by the Foreign Ministry took issue with comments by U.S. Rep. Eliot Engel, who said he is “deeply concerned by the reports of police brutality in response to peaceful protests in Hong Kong.” The New York Democrat is chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee.

The Chinese statement noted that both President Donald Trump and the mayor of New York had condemned recent incidents in which people had doused New York City police officers with buckets of water.

It noted in contrast that Hong Kong protesters had stormed and vandalized the legislative building and defaced the Chinese national emblem at the mainland government’s office in the city. A clear protective shield now hangs over the emblem.


4:20 p.m.

A large crowd of protesters is streaming out of a park in central Hong Kong and has started marching down a wide avenue.

The unscripted march started Sunday after a short rally against the use of force by police to break up a protest last weekend.

Police had rejected the organizer’s request to march to the city’s Sheung Wan district, where tear gas was fired at protesters a week ago.

The protesters headed in the other direction, their destination unclear.


3:30 p.m.

A large crowd has gathered in a park in downtown Hong Kong for the latest anti-government protest in what has become a summer of discontent.

Organizers called Sunday’s rally to protest the police use of tear gas and rubber bullets to break up a demonstration one week ago.

A banner read “Seek responsibility for those who opened fire.”

People sat on the ground and fanned themselves in the heat as they listened to speakers and chanted slogans. Many wore black shirts.

Police have denied permission for a march to the Sheung Wan district where the tear gas was used, but some protesters are expected to march anyway.

Their demands include the resignation of Hong Kong’s leader and an investigation into police use of force against protesters.


11:25 a.m.

Protesters and police are preparing for a likely showdown in central Hong Kong, one day after clashes led to 11 arrests and left at least two dozen injured in an outlying district toward the border with mainland China.

A rally has been called for Sunday afternoon at Chater Garden, an urban park in the financial district. Police have denied a request to march about 2 kilometers (1.4 miles) west to Sun Yat-sen Memorial Park, but at least some of the demonstrators may still try to push forward.

Hong Kong has been wracked by protests for seven weeks, as opposition to an extradition bill has morphed into demands for the resignation of the city’s leader and a broader push for democracy in the semi-autonomous Chinese territory.