Hong Kong: Police Fire Tear Gas As Thousands Take To Streets In Fresh Wave Of Protests

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Riot police have fired tear gas to disperse thousands of anti-government protesters in Hong Kong on Dec 1 as the protestors took to the streets chanting slogans

Written By Sounak Mitra | Mumbai | Updated On:

Riot police have fired tear gas to disperse thousands of anti-government protesters in Hong Kong on December 1 as the protestors took to the streets chanting "revolution of our time" and "liberate Hong Kong”. The incident took place in the busy commercial district of Tsim Sha Tsui followed by a march by hundreds of people heading towards the US consulate to show gratitude towards US. Shops and business establishments were shuttered in the area early as the police sprayed volleys of tear gas at protesters as they marched towards the city’s Kowloon waterfront, which is home to the city's luxurious hotels and shopping malls. Police have arrested a lot of people as the tear gas sent hundreds fleeing toward the harbor.

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Protesters celebrate Trump's support

Protesters on Thursday celebrated after Trump unexpectedly signed two bills that commit the US to conduct an annual review into the state of Hong Kong’s autonomy from mainland China. It could also be revoked if the semi-autonomous territory's freedoms are quashed. Earlier, the US Congress had also passed legislation banning sales of tear gas, rubber bullets and other equipment used by Hong Kong security forces in putting down the protests. The move threatens to complicate trade talks with Beijing just as the two nations get close to signing a phase one deal.

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Elections amid high political instability

The Democratic election was held in the country after massive protests broke out in the country against the government after it proposed a controversial extradition bill. The bill now stands withdrawn. Total turnout exceeded 2.94 million voters, a rate of 71 per cent, surpassing a record from the previous legislative council election in 2016 of about 1.47 million. A record 4.1 million people, including 4,00,000 new voters, signed up to cast ballots in the poll. The protests started in June over a now-abandoned extradition bill. However, it later escalated to include demands for democratic elections for the city’s leader and legislature, and an independent probe into alleged police brutality in suppressing the protests. A statement was released by the government in which the executive leader, Carrie Lam said the government will certainly listen humbly to citizens' opinions and revert back on them seriously. 

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