Hong Kong police fire tear gas at protesters near Beijing liaison office

HONG KONG: Hong Kong police fired tear gas on Sunday (Jul 28) at protesters close to Beijing’s liaison office in the financial hub, the latest clashes in a city gripped by weeks of political unrest.

Television images showed riot police launching multiple volleys of tear gas at protesters who had set up barricades close to the Liaison Office of the Central People’s Government in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, which was pelted with eggs and paint a week ago.

A group of about 200 protesters had earlier marched towards the Liason Office – the department that represents China’s central government – which was guarded by lines of riot police.

Hong Kong authorities had erected a wall of water-filled barricades and glued down bricks in the pavement in anticipation of further unrest. A clear plastic shield also covered a national emblem that had been defaced a week before.

Hong Kong police fire tear gas at protesters on Jul 28, 2019
Hong Kong police fire tear gas at protesters on Jul 28, 2019. (Photo: Reuters) 

Scores of riot police were stationed inside the building itself, while vehicles and tourist coaches full of other officers deployed in nearby streets. 

The Hong Kong Police Force said in an update on Twitter that protesters were throwing bricks at police officers and that the situation was “drastically deteriorating”.

“The police is now conducting a dispersal operation eastward with tear gas used,” they added.

Hong Kong China liaison office emblem in plastic plexiglass
The China’s liaison office emblem is seen protected by plexiglass during a demonstration in Hong Kong, Jul 28, 2019. (Photo: AFP/Anthony Wallace)

The police force also appealed to protesters to leave the area and not charge police cordon lines. Members of the public have also been advised to not travel to the area.