MOSCOW, October 4 (RIA Novosti) - Hong Kong police have arrested 19 protesters, including eight suspected members of triad criminal gangs, Channel News Asia reported early Saturday morning citing Hong Kong police.
According to the police statement at a press briefing Saturday, protesters were arrested after they refused to negotiate with the government that fails to put an end to the attacks.
"There is no other option but to call off talks," Channel News Asia cited the Hong Kong Federation of Students, one of the protests' activist group.
"The government and police turned a blind eye to violent acts by the triads targeting peaceful Occupy [student group that initially organized demonstrations] protesters," Channel News Asia reported the union as saying.
Hong Kong leader Leung Chun-ying had promised students negotiations with the top civil servant with a view to put an end to the continuing standoff. Leung Chun-ying is currently facing calls to resign.
Thousands of people have taken to the streets of Hong Kong in recent days to take part in protests against the Chinese government's plans to control the 2017 Hong Kong election.
Protesters claim Beijing has breached its pledge to allow universal suffrage in Hong Kong and maintain the city's autonomy under "one country, two systems" formula, which was promised when Hong Kong was handed back to China by Britain in 1997.
Anti-riot police used pepper spray and tear gas in suppressing the protest. The clashes are considered to be the worst unrest since sovereignty over Hong Kong was transferred to China from the United Kingdom.
The term "Triad" refers to transnational organized crime groups mainly based in Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan.