Police-protester skirmishes and spontaneous road blockades broke out across Kowloon on Saturday evening, as Tsim Sha Tsui police station was surrounded on the tenth consecutive weekend of mass protests in Hong Kong.
Protesters had relocated from the New Territories after the banned Tai Po march transformed into road occupations in Shatin and Tai Wai during the afternoon.
In Tai Wai, tear gas was fired to disperse crowds at around 7pm.
At 8pm, tear gas was also fired in Tsim Sha Tsui as protesters surrounded the local police station and occupied the Nathan Road shopping thoroughfare.
Earlier, some briefly blocked the entrance to the Cross-Harbour Tunnel in Hung Hom.
The arrest of a woman dressed in white without protective gear – a Cathay Pacific air hostess according to Oriental Daily – caused local residents and passers-by to surround and heckle the police.
At the scene, pro-democracy legislators Ted Hui and Alvin Yeung claimed that a riot police officer charged towards her after “losing control of his emotions”.
At the request of the police, MTR trains did not stop in Jordan or Tsim Sha Tsui after 10.30pm.
From Tsim Sha Tsui, protesters scattered across Kowloon, building roadblocks at Kowloon Bay, Kwun Tong and Tsuen Wan.
The makeshift barricades were quickly removed by police.
Police continued to fire intermittent rounds of tear gas in Tsim Sha Tsui until 11:30pm, when they advanced out of the police station and made several arrests.
Nathan Road was reopened to vehicles by midnight, as the nearby MTR services resumed.
A government spokesperson criticised Saturday’s protests: “We have to emphasise that protesters’ behaviors are not only illegal but also disregarding public order and the needs of other members of the public. Violent behaviours such as arson are even more dangerous. The Government strongly condemns these acts. The police will strictly enforce the law. Violent protesters who breached the law should be brought to justice.”
On Saturday morning, two peaceful anti-extradition law marches led by the elderly and by parents with children also took place on Hong Kong Island.
Meanwhile, the pro-Beijing Safeguard Hong Kong Alliance organised visits to several police stations across Hong Kong – including Kwun Tong, Kwai Chung and Central – to thank the force for the efforts during the summer.
Anti-extradition bill marches were planned for Sham Shui Po and Hong Kong Island East on Sunday, but they have both been banned by the police.
The decisions were upheld by an appeal board, but demonstrators are still expected to gather.
Only a rally in Victoria Park from 1pm-5pm has been authorised.