Protesters square up against riot police
Pro-Democracy protests in Hong Kong have continued into Monday morning with thousands of sleeping protesters still occupying the streets.
While images of exhausted police and demonstrators are now being broadcast and reports the riot police have withdrawn, the protestors look set on staying put.
This movement is now being dubbed as “The Umbrella Revolution” with people shouting: “Do something good for Hong Kong. We want real democracy!”
Over the weekend, reports of violent clashes between the protestors and police were seen with police throwing tear gas at the crowds and constructing defense barriers. In response, thousands sought to protect themselves with homemade goggles and improvised shields. Twenty-six people have reportedly been taken to hospital and 148 arrested.
The clashes come as a climax to last week when students boycotted classes to protest Beijing‘s plans to vet candidates and rejecting open nominations for Hong Kong’s 2017 leadership elections. Since China took over Hong Kong from the British in 1997, it has maintained certain liberties and control unseen in mainland China.
Now, Hong Kong’s “one country, two systems” premise is being directly challenged.
The Chinese government are calling the protests illegal. Despite their efforts for a media blackout, extraordinary scenes of deserted and litter strewn streets have still emerged from the city.
In an effort to stem the tide of images, the government have now banned Instagram on the Chinese mainland.