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Hong Kong police shoot at protester in fresh unrest

The chaos in Hong Kong started early on Monday when demonstrators, still angry after the first protest-related death on Friday, moved to disrupt the morning commute. A scuffle ensued outside a subway station in which a police officer shot a protes...

Bloomberg|
Nov 12, 2019, 12.03 AM IST
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AP
Police---AP
Riot police during clashes with students outside a shopping mall in Hong Kong, Monday, Nov. 11, 2019. An anti-government protester was shot by police Monday in a dramatic scene caught on video as demonstrators blocked train lines and roads in a day of spiraling violence fueled by demands for democratic reforms.
HONG KONG: Hong Kong on Monday saw one of its most violent days since protests began in June, with clashes involving police and protesters leaving downtown paralysed, transportation networks hobbled and two men clinging to life.

The chaos started early on Monday when demonstrators, still angry after the first protest-related death on Friday, moved to disrupt the morning commute. A scuffle ensued outside a subway station in which a police officer shot a protester at point blank, all of which was caught on a video that went viral within moments. He's currently in intensive care.

On Monday, a man was set on fire while arguing with one group in the northeastern area of Ma On Shan. He is also in critical condition. The shooting spawned calls for a flash mob at noon in Central, where protesters blocked roads in one of Hong Kong's premier shopping districts. Police fired tear gas to clear them out, leading to chaotic scenes of office workers ducking into malls to wash out their eyes with water.

Around the same time, video emerged of a man doused with petrol and lit on fire. Hu Xijin, an editor with China's state-run Global Times newspaper, said the victim had “openly disagreed with radical protesters” at the time of the attack.

He's currently in critical condition, according to hospital authorities. The shocking videos raised fears that things could get even worse, as the pro-democracy protests show no signs of letting up after five months of increasingly violent demonstrations opposing Beijing's grip over the city. Hong Kong stocks on Monday saw their biggest loss in about three months, banks sent people home early and the Hong Kong Jockey Club closed all off-course betting branches, underscoring fears about an economy already in recession.

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