Updated Sep 29, 2019

Hong Kong police fire tear gas on protesters ahead of China anniversary

Thousands of people hold an unsanctioned march through the streets of Hong Kong on Sunday. Photo: Mohd Rasfan/Getty Images

Hong Kong police fired tear gas, water cannon and blue-dyed liquid on protesters taking part in a massive, unsanctioned march against totalitarianism during a violent weekend of clashes with authorities, Bloomberg reports.

Why it matters: The protest marks the 17th week of Hong Kong's political crisis, which began over an extradition bill that has since been withdrawn by Hong Kong's chief executive Carrie Lam. The protests have "ruptured" trust between Hong Kong residents and the city's institutions, with much of the anger directed at Lam, per the Post.

Details: During the unsanctioned rally, protesters set objects on fire and smashed windows at a train station, according to Bloomberg. Hundreds of pro-China supporters turned out for a counter-protest on Sunday, AP reports.

  • On Saturday, hundreds of thousands protested during a sanctioned rally commemorating the 5th anniversary of the 2014 Umbrella Movement, which also saw protesters take a stand against the Chinese government, Reuters reports. Police used tear gas and water cannon to disperse the crowds.

The big picture: "Hong Kong’s eruption into monthslong protests may have been the result not only of Beijing’s overreach, but also of seismic changes in Hong Kong identity itself, according to new research and opinion polling," the New York Times reports. "Being Hong Konger and being Chinese, long complementary, suddenly came to feel exclusive."

Context: The 2014 Umbrella Movement took hold after Beijing submitted a proposal that would limit Hong Kong's democracy and wouldn't allow the city to vote for its own leader, per the Post. Over the course of a few months, protestors staged sit-in street protests and carried umbrellas against pepper spray from riot police.

  • Police fired 87 canisters of tear gas in 2014. Thus far in 2019, police have fired over 3,000 canisters and hundreds of rubber bullets in an effort to quell the protests, according to the Washington Post.

What's next: Hong Kong residents are threatening to stage a counter-rally during a celebration for the 70th anniversary of the founding of the People's Republic of China, per the Post.

In photos
Hong Kong police fire tear gas toward protesters taking part in an unsanctioned march through the streets of Hong Kong on Sunday. Photo: Mohd Rafsan/AFP/Getty Images
Hong Kong police detain a man (C) after moving in on protesters gathered in the Causeway Bay shopping district in Hong Kong. Photo: Mohd Rafsan/AFP/Getty Images
Pro-China supporters at Hong Kong Cultural Centre on Sunday. Photo: Anthony Kwan/Getty Images
Riot police stop a man with a placard at Causeway Bay district in Hong Kong. Photo: Mohd Rasfan/AFP/Getty Images
Protesters protect themselves after police fire water cannon toward them as they occupy a main road in the Admiralty area of Hong Kong Saturday. Photo: Nicolas Asfouri/AFP/Getty Images
Police use water canons to disperse protesters outside the Central Government Complex. Photo: Anthony Kwan/Getty Images
Hundreds of thousands rally in Hong Kong. Photo: Chris McGrath/Getty Images
Pro-democracy protesters throw bricks at the Central Government Complex in Hong Kong. Photo: Anthony Kwan/Getty Images
Protesters paste a poster of Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam on a street in Causeway Bay district. Photo: Anthony Kwan/Getty Images
Riot police stand guard near the central government offices in the Admiralty area in Hong Kong. Photo: Mohd Rasfan/AFP/Getty Images
Protesters occupy a main road outside the central government offices (R) in the Admiralty area. Photo: Nicolas Asfouri/AFP/Getty Images

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Editor's note: This article has been updated with details of the latest clashes with police.

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In photos: A tale of 2 cities on 70th anniversary of Communist China

The Tiananmen Square parade in Beijing marking the 70th anniversary of the founding of the People's Republic of China. Photo: Kevin Frayer/Getty Images

China showed off a new hypersonic ballistic nuclear missile, the DF-17, as it displayed its military might during a grand parade in Beijing marking the 70th anniversary of Communist Party rule, AP reports. But clashes between police and protesters in Hong Kong cast a shadow over celebrations.

The big picture: Hong Kong authorities had tried to thwart protesters as Chinese President Xi Jinping oversaw the Beijing parade that showcased some 15,000 soldiers and 100,000 performers, per the New York Times. Hong Kong went into unprecedented lockdown, Reuters notes. But tens of thousands of protesters defied a ban on marches and attended rallies throughout the city, per Bloomberg.

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Tens of thousands of pro-democracy protesters marched in Hong Kong on Sunday in defiance of a police ban against assembly, rallying in support of a pro-democracy group leader who was attacked by five men wielding hammers three days earlier, according to the BBC.

The state of play: Though the march was largely peaceful, some protestors threw firebombs at police and vandalized Chinese banks and shops. Police responded by shooting tear gas canisters and deploying water cannons loaded with a blue irritant used to mark protestors for later arrest.

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On China anniversary, violence erupts between Hong Kong police and protesters

Hong Kong police fire water cannons and blue dye from the central government complex toward protesters. Photo: Mohd Rasfan/AFP/Getty Images

Violent clashes erupted across Hong Kong between police and protesters as tens of thousands defied a marching ban on Tuesday, China's 70th anniversary of Communist Party rule, the New York Times reports.

What's happening: A police officer shot a pro-democracy protester in the first incident of its nature since the protests started months ago, reports AP, which called the event an "escalation of the monthslong unrest that has rocked the city."

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