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    Police officers stand next to a burning barricade during an anti-government protest in Hong Kong China

    Hong Kong Police Deploy Tear Gas, Water Cannons to Disperse Protesters - Reports

    © REUTERS / Ammar Awad
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    MOSCOW (Sputnik) - Hong Kong police used tear gas and water cannons to disperse an unauthorized rally in the Causeway Bay area of the city, RTHK broadcaster reported on Saturday.

    Over 100 Democratic Party candidates for the Hong Kong District Council held a meeting earlier in the day with the electorate in Victoria Park, according to the RTHK broadcaster. The riot police raised a black flag and called on the crowd to disperse because the rally was unauthorized. Following their warning, the law enforcement officers used tears gas.

    Some candidates engaged in a dialogue with the police, hoping that they would not prevent them from holding a rally. After the police entered Victoria Park, a member of the Legislative Council turned to them and demanded that the police give the demonstrators time to leave.

    ​The media outlet reported that in the second half of the day the police deployed water cannons in the Wan Chai district of Hong Kong. The water was mixed with tear gas. Some protesters gathered around the Queen's Road Central and were building barricades of bricks and other objects.

    According to the South China Morning Post newspaper, protesters were throwing Molotov cocktails at the Wan Chai district police, in response to which they used cannons with tear gas and water.

    The mass protests started in China's special administrative region in early June as a reaction to a highly unpopular bill that would have allowed people to be extradited to the mainland. The protests eventually escalated into violent confrontations between demonstrators and the police.

    Hong Kong law enforcement officers maintain that they use force proportionately and only in response to violent acts or unlawful behavior by the protesters. Beijing views the situation in Hong Kong as a result of foreign interference in China's domestic affairs and expresses full support for the actions of local authorities.

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