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Things Get Ugly in Hong Kong

Riot officers break into university held by protesters as fires rage
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Nov 17, 2019 5:15 PM CST
Updated Nov 18, 2019 6:50 AM CST
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Fires burn at the steps to Hong Kong Polytechnic University as police storm the campus in Hong Kong, early Monday, Nov. 18, 2019.   (AP Photo/Vincent Yu)
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(Newser) – Hong Kong police using tear gas and rubber bullets fought off protesters Monday as they tried to break through a police cordon that is trapping hundreds of them on a university campus. Protesters advanced on the police from outside the cordon, while others emerged from the campus, their trademark umbrellas at the fore. Police in some places swooped in to subdue protesters and make arrests, reports the AP. It wasn’t clear if any of those inside Hong Kong Polytechnic University escaped. Hong Kong’s work week started with multiple protests that disrupted traffic, and schools remained closed because of safety concerns. There was a temporary lull in the pitched battles for control of the Polytechnic campus as the emphasis shifted from battering the protesters with tear gas and water cannons to waiting for them to come out.

Riot officers broke in one entrance before dawn as fires raged inside and outside the school, but they didn’t appear to get very far. Fiery explosions occurred as protesters responded with gasoline bombs. Police, who have warned that everyone in the area could be charged with rioting, reportedly made a handful of arrests. At daybreak, protesters remained in control of most of the campus. In one outdoor area, some demonstrators made gasoline bombs while others dozed while wearing gas masks. Two walked about with bows and quivers of arrows, while many stared at their smartphones. “We are exhausted because we were up since 5am yesterday,” said a protester who gave only his first name, Matthew. “We are desperate because our supplies are running low.”

(Read more Hong Kong stories.)

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