‘Flashmob’ protests hit Hong Kong

Riot police clashed with anti-government protesters across Hong Kong on Sunday as masked activists vandalised businesses deemed sympathetic to Beijing in another weekend of chaos in the financial hub.

Rallies erupted in multiple neighbourhoods, with some protesters blocking roads, sabotaging train tracks, and trashing pro-China businesses.

Police said an officer was taken to hospital after his neck was slashed. Local television networks also broadcast footage of a man beaten bloody by protesters after they found a baton in his bag and suspected him of being an undercover officer.

In Mongkok, a bustling shopping district on the Kowloon peninsula, officers burst from an unmarked van over a blockade of bamboo scaffolding and quickly chased down multiple protesters.

Police arrested dozens of protesters, and said they used “minimum force”. Later, protesters beat a woman accused of helping police clear barricades. She was struck with fists and umbrellas, and also had her face smeared with mud.

Protests and clashes were reported in half a dozen neighbourhoods, with police saying they fired tear gas during two incidents.

While the crowds were thinner, the flashmob tactics stretched police resources and still brought chaos to parts of the city.


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