Tear gas used against Hong Kong protesters, water cannon make first appearance

Tear gas used against Hong Kong protesters, water cannon make first appearance
© Getty Images

Hong Kong police on Sunday used tear gas against protesters and water cannon trucks made their first appearance since demonstrations began two months ago, according to The Associated Press.

Police used the trucks and tear gas after demonstrators occupied a main street in the Tsuen Wan district, according to the AP. After police initially used tear gas in an attempt to disperse the crowd, demonstrators reportedly hurled bricks and gasoline bombs back at them, leading police to deploy two water cannon trucks.

ADVERTISEMENT

Video footage from the scene does not show the water jet from actually hitting any demonstrators, signaling it may have been a test, the AP noted.

The incident followed a demonstration in the rain by tens of thousands of protesters that began near the Kwai Fong train station, where earlier in August police used tear gas to disperse demonstrators, according to the news service.

The protests, which began earlier in the summer, were initially spurred by a bill that would allow some criminal suspects to be extradited to China. Chief Executive Carrie Lam has since suspended the bill and declared it “dead,” but protesters have continued to demand a formal withdrawal.

Protesters are also calling for Lam’s resignation and an independent probe into police brutality against protesters, as well as demonstrating against what they see as a general erosion of the city’s autonomy from China since the U.K. relinquished control in 1997.