Hong Kong police officer hit by arrow as authorities clash with protesters

17 November 2019, 09:08

Protesters and authorities have continued to clash in Hong Kong
Protesters and authorities have continued to clash in Hong Kong. Picture: PA

By Megan White

A police officer in Hong Kong has been hit by an arrow as authorities used tear gas and water cannons to try and tackle protesters.

Activists in the territory were occupying Hong Kong Polytechnic University and the surrounding streets when the incident took place.

Police said the arrow struck a media liaison officer, who was taken to a hospital.

Photos on the department's Facebook page show the arrow sticking out of the back of the officer's lower leg.


Posted by 香港警察 Hong Kong Police on Saturday, 16 November 2019

Water cannon trucks drove over bricks and nails left by protesters and sprayed them at close range in a bid to drive them away from the area.

The push came in an hours-long stand-off that followed intense clashes the previous night.

Riot police shot tear gas at the protesters, who sheltered behind a wall of umbrellas across an entire street and threw petrol bombs into nearby bushes and trees, setting them on fire.

The water cannons arrived in the early afternoon, one using blue-dyed water to drench the protesters.

Protesters clashed with authorities at Hong Kong Polytechnic University
Protesters clashed with authorities at Hong Kong Polytechnic University. Picture: PA

The daytime face-off came after a battle at night in which the two sides exchanged tear gas and petrol bombs that left fires blazing in the street.

Protesters have largely retreated from occupations of several major campuses last week, except for a contingent at Hong Kong Polytechnic.

That group is also blocking access to the nearby Cross-Harbour Tunnel, one of the three main road tunnels that link Hong Kong Island with the rest of the city.

The Education Bureau announced that school classes would be suspended again on Monday because of safety concerns.

Civil unrest has continued in Hong Kong
Civil unrest has continued in Hong Kong. Picture: PA

The city's anti-government protests have been raging for more than five months.

They were sparked by a government decision to submit legislation that would have allowed the extradition of criminal suspects to the mainland.

Activists saw it as an erosion of Hong Kong's autonomy under the "one country, two systems" formula implemented in 1997, when the UK returned the territory to China.

The bill has been withdrawn, but the protests have expanded into a wider resistance movement against what is perceived as the growing control of Hong Kong by China, along with calls for full democracy for the territory.