HONG KONG (Xinhua) — Some radical demonstrators set fires on roads and at least one exit of the Mass Transit Railway (MTR) in the central areas of Hong Kong Sunday afternoon, as prolonged protests continued to disrupt traffic and cause chaos here for the third month.
Rioters smashed windows, obstructed escalators and vandalized facilities at the MTR Central station before starting the arson at one of the exits, forcing the close-down of the station.
They also built barricades with dismantled road railings, trash bins and other miscellaneous objects on streets in Central and Admiralty areas.
Huge smokes billowed into the sky before fire fighters came and extinguished the fire.
As the police carried out dispersal operations in Central and Admiralty districts, some demonstrators headed to Wan Chai and Causeway Bay, blocking carriageways in the areas and paralyzing traffic.
The Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) government’s Transport Department announced Sunday evening that several road sections on Hong Kong Island were temporarily blocked to all traffic, and the services of 18 bus routes were suspended and over 60 routes were truncated or diverted.
The MTR announced in the evening that Central and Wan Chai stations were temporarily closed because of an escalation of the situation in the stations.
The police said they have deployed tear gas and used appropriate force to disperse radical demonstrators in Causeway Bay.
The police appealed to everyone on site to leave immediately and condemned all violent acts by rioters. Residents of the areas were advised to stay tuned to the latest situation and if necessary keep their windows shut and stay indoors.
Later on Sunday night, some radical protesters blocked carriageways in Mong Kok, Kowloon, by setting up barricades with trash bins and debris, paralyzing the traffic.
Some protesters hurled hard objects into Mong Kok police station, posing a safety threat to members of the public and police officers at scene.
The nearby Prince Edward and Mong Kok MTR stations were temporarily closed due to the violence.
The police warned the protesters to stop all illegal acts and leave immediately. After repeated warnings in vain, the police started to disperse the protesters.