Clashes have been reported between protesters and police in Hong Kong on Sunday, August 25, amid the 12th consecutive weekend of anti-government protests denouncing a perceived erosion of liberties associated with the "one country, two systems" model of governance. Protesters reportedly marched in the New Territories on Sunday from the Kwai Chung Sports Ground/Kwai Fong to Tsuen Wan Park. MTR Corporation notably closed multiple stations, including Kwai Fong, Tsuen Wan, and Tsuen Wan West, on Sunday until further notice due to protest activity.
Police fired tear gas and a water cannon at protesters in Tsuen Wan; some protesters erected barricades and hurled bricks at police. A police-fired warning gunshot was reported on Sha Tsui Road in Tsuen Wan after protesters wielding metal rods skirmished with police officers. As of 22:38 (local time) on Sunday, crowds of protesters were reportedly beginning to disperse, though demonstrators were continuing to occupy the intersection of Sha Tsui Road and Chung On Street. A heightened security presence and lingering traffic disruptions are to be expected in Tsuen Wan over the coming hours.
Additional protests are to be expected in Hong Kong over the coming days. Notably, calls for "public events" at the MTR headquarters in Kowloon Bay have prompted its closure on Monday, August 26. On Saturday, August 31, protesters are slated to hold a rally at Chater Garden at 14:00 before later proceeding to the Liaison Office. Heightened security measures and localized transportation disruptions are anticipated around all demonstrations. Clashes between security personnel and demonstrators cannot be ruled out.
Protests and mass demonstrations of up to 2 million people have been held in Hong Kong since June 9, in opposition to a controversial bill that would allow authorities in Hong Kong to extradite fugitives wanted in mainland China and other territories. Opponents claim the law would erode freedoms and be used to silence dissent and criticism. The bill has been suspended, though not fully withdrawn. Demonstrations have spread from Hong Kong Island to Kowloon and the New Territories in recent weeks and have also become increasingly violent. On July 21, a group of pro-government men armed with bars and sticks attacked protesters and commuters in Yuen Long, leaving 45 people injured. Activists have also accused the police of using unnecessary force in their attempts to disperse protesters.
Individuals in Hong Kong are advised to monitor developments, avoid all protests and demonstrations, prepare for associated disruptions to transportation and business, and adhere to all instructions issued by the local authorities and their home governments.
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