Hong Kong protest clashes at Mong Kok
Police and pro-democracy protesters have clashed in a battle for territory in the Hong Kong district of Mong Kok.
Some reports suggested police charged after the demonstrators had breached their barriers, sparking scuffles that caused minor injuries on both sides.
Protesters on social media accused the police of an unprovoked attack.Leaders on both sides have called for calm, and confirmed that talks between protest leaders and the government delegates will take place next Tuesday.
The protesters, many of them youths and students, are angry at China’s rulers for limiting their choice of leader in the next election in 2017.
They accuse Hong Kong’s current leader, CY Leung, of failing to stand up to the Chinese Communist Party.
Protests erupted last month and have been going on intermittently around government buildings and the business district on Hong Kong island, and in Mong Kok, a residential and shopping area in Kowloon.
On Friday morning, police had all but cleared the Mong Kok site and protesters’ numbers had substantially dwindled elsewhere.But clashes resumed later as protesters launched a sustained effort to reoccupy a busy road junction in Mong Kok.About 9,000 protesters pushed police back, with 26 people arrested.
At about midnight on Saturday (16:00 GMT), police charged protesters, beating them with batons and deploying pepper spray.A stand-off resumed shortly afterwards with neither side having gained any ground.
The government confirms talks with students on Tuesday despite protesters retaking Mong Kok
Talks between the two sides were announced earlier.
Carrie Lam, CY Leung’s deputy, said both sides would send five representatives to the negotiations, which will be broadcast live on television.