Mobs clash with pro-democracy protestors in Hong Kong’s business district
13 Oct 2014
Hundreds of men attempted to bring down the barricades erected by Hong Kong pro-democracy protesters near the city's business district, as truck and cab drivers fretted over the blockades in the third week of protests, Bloomberg reported.
Several cabs and trucks drove right up to some barricades earlier this afternoon, with banners on their hoods saying ''Enough is Enough.'' In a face-off police took on some men, wearing face masks, who were detained.
This came as the second time the police had to deal with mobs of angry men seeking to get rid of the protesters since the rallies started 26 September.
The city been effectively polarized, as pro-democracy protestors push for free elections, while retailers and drivers despair as hold ups and other inconveniences hit their business.
Blockaded roads at the three protest sites had disrupted 40 per cent of bus routes causing miles of rush-hour traffic jams.
The current action started in protest of the Chinese government's insistence on vetting candidates for the election of the city's chief executive in 2017.
The protests are down since they drew over than 100,000, in the streets, though tensions had been increasing with the demonstrations pitting Hong Kong people against each other in what had turned out to be the former British colony's worst political crisis since China regained sovereignty in 1997.
The protesters had been given a deadline of Wednesday evening for lifting of all barricades.
A truck with a crane atop tried to remove barricades from one area but was stopped by the police. However, protesters complained that police failed to act quickly enough, Reuters reported.
Hundreds of police had earlier dismantled a number of barricades to ease the traffic congestion in the Asian financial hub, but said protesters could remain.
Anti-Occupy Central groups, however, descended on the protest sites in a bid to disperse demonstrators as they sought to take advantage of the earlier police action to remove barricades.
Demonstrators and anti-protest groups quickly came to blows, with protesters believing the attacks were co-ordinated and might have involved triad Asian crime gangs.
The anti-protest groups included a number of people who spoke Mandarin, but could not speak Cantonese, suggesting they were not from Hong Kong.
Police had to finally step in and separate the two group, forming a human barricade to restore an uneasy calm to the streets. Hong Kong residents however expect more trouble in the coming days.