Hong Kong Riot Police Clash with Airport Protesters

Hong Kong Riot Police Clash with Airport Protesters

Police armed with batons and pepper spray have clashed with thousands of protesters at Hong Kong’s international airport after they blockaded the departures area of the busy hub, forcing flights to be suspended for a second day.

After a day of largely peaceful protests, marked mostly by arguments between demonstrators and frustrated travellers, violence broke out between riot police and demonstrators after nightfall.

A group of uniformed police officers entered the airport, where they were met with a sea of laser pointers and chants of “Give back the eye”, in solidarity with a woman badly injured in earlier protests who may lose the sight in her right eye.

Those officers left and soon after riot police arrived, using pepper spray and batons to try to enter the airport. Protesters quickly erected barricades and there was a series of violent confrontations and several arrests.

In less than half an hour, the police withdrew. They later said they had gone in to rescue an injured man who had been detained by protesters on suspicion of being an undercover officer, the Associated Press reported

After the police retreated from the terminal, protesters barricaded themselves in, leaving the two sides in an uneasy standoff. It was the fifth consecutive day that thousands of people had flocked to demonstrate at the city’s airport.

The pro-democracy protest movement, originally launched in response to a controversial extradition law, is now in its 10th week, and there have been increasingly violent clashes between police and protesters.

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