Water cannons used after petrol bomb attack - RTHK
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Water cannons used after petrol bomb attack

2019-09-15 HKT 17:26
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  • Water cannons used after petrol bomb attack
  • Protesters hurled many petrol bombs towards government headquarters in Tamar. Photo: RTHK
    Protesters hurled many petrol bombs towards government headquarters in Tamar. Photo: RTHK
  • Police responded with volleys of tear gas, but most of the protesters were unfazed, with many simply picking them up and throwing them back at the police. Photo: RTHK
    Police responded with volleys of tear gas, but most of the protesters were unfazed, with many simply picking them up and throwing them back at the police. Photo: RTHK
Anti-government demonstrators hurled petrol bombs, set fires, vandalised MTR property and blocked roads while police answered with water-cannon bursts and tear gas in Admiralty after another largely-peaceful rally again turned violent on Sunday afternoon.

Protesters threw numerous petrol bombs towards government headquarters at Tamar, with some bursting into flame behind giant water barriers surrounding the complex.

At least one struck the water-cannon truck and set it on fire briefly, before police doused the flames.

The cannon shot out several bursts of water at large crowds of protesters who had taken over Harcourt Road right outside government headquarters. They later switched to water containing blue dye -- something that had also been used during a previous protest last month. Police also fired multiple volleys of tear gas, as officers struggled to gain control over the situation.

Video circulating online also showed how one of the petrol bombs was apparently thrown by mistake into a group of protesters and reporters, setting one person on fire briefly before other people helped put it out.

Eventually, large groups of riot police, backed by a the anti-riot water cannon truck along with other police vehicles, moved in slowly on the protesters, firing off more bursts of blue-dyed water and tear gas. The bulk of the demonstrators retreated towards Wan Chai ahead of the police advance. There, they regrouped and set more road barricades, along with several fires in the middle of the street, as well as at the entrances of MTR stations. Firefighters arrived quickly to put out the flames.

As they have done in previous protests, many demonstrators stopped to change out of their black clothes -- some at a church in the area.

Virtually all the shops had long since pulled down their shutters by the time the protesters arrived. However, a few individual shops stayed open, with customers casually eating inside a noodle restaurant as masked demonstrators gathered outside.

Earlier, as the protesters were hurling petrol bomb after petrol bomb at government headquarters, they had also used a large slingshot to shoot bricks and other objects at targets. Some squeezed bottles of liquid detergent onto the roads and used firehoses to spray water on them in an apparent bid to make the roads difficult for police to navigate.

Many others set up multiple barricades at various MTR stations, threw bricks down into the entrance and turned on more fire hoses, saying that the police were inside.

Many demonstrators were unfazed by the barrage of tear gas, picking them up and throwing them back towards the police.

The MTR Corporation has closed down its Admiralty and Wan Chai stations after protesters broke glass partitions and CCTV cameras there, while setting up makeshift barricades at exits.

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Last updated: 2019-09-15 HKT 18:47