MOSCOW, October 13 (RIA Novosti) – Protesters clashed with a mob of masked men who started removing street barriers in Admiralty, the eastern extension of Hong Kong's central business district, while taxi drivers were blocking roads, South China Morning Post reported Monday.
"Occupy Central with Love and Peace (OCLP) regrets the police's removal of some of the barricades set up by the occupy movement this morning. At around noon dozens of masked men then forcefully removed blockades in the Admiralty occupied zone. OCLP condemns these violent actions," a statement released by Occupy Central said as quoted by South China Morning Post.
"We urge the police to enforce the law and prevent certain people from damaging peaceful occupy movement, and avoid any suspicion that the government may be trying to use the masses to attack the masses," the statement added.
According to South China Morning Post, the mob of masked men "appeared to be working in tandem with taxi drivers and truck drivers" who were blocking Queensway and Cotton Tree Drive while "some of the masked men cut the plastic cable ties connecting barriers on Queensway and confronted Occupy protesters".
Earlier on Monday it was reported that Hong Kong police had started removing the barricades set up by Occupy Central protesters, who are dissatisfied with the Chinese government's plans to control the 2017 elections in Hong Kong.
The Occupy Central with Love and Peace protests began on September 27. Protesters claimed Beijing has gone back on its pledge to allow universal suffrage in Hong Kong, which was promised a high degree of autonomy when it was handed back to China by Britain in 1997.