Crowds are gathering outside of Hong Kong International Airport (HKG) as of 15:15 (local time) on Sunday, September 1, after a day of violent protests. According to local media reports, access roads to HKG are being blocked by barricades erected by demonstrators as well as some police roadblocks. Airport Express train service has reportedly been suspended along with some bus service. Earlier in the afternoon, some protesters attempted to rally inside HKG’s Terminal 1 but were disperse by a heavy police presence. As of Sunday afternoon, flight disruptions have not been reported, but it may take travelers more time to reach the airport or to leave after arriving. Riot police are being deployed to the bus terminal and clashes between demonstrators and security forces are possible in the coming hours.
Additional protests are expected to take place in the coming days. On Friday, August 30, police officials banned a rally scheduled for Monday, September 2, in Tsim Sha Tsui. The demonstration was set to coincide with the launch of a two-day strike across the territory at 13:00. Workers from at least 20 different sectors are expected to participate. It is unclear if the police will also ban a rally set to take place at Tamar Park in Admiralty on Monday. University and secondary students are also planning to strike on Monday and Tuesday, September 3. Secondary students in Hong Kong Island and Kowloon plan to gather at Edinburgh Place from 10:30 to 17:00 on September 2. University students are also calling for a rally at the Chinese University of Hong Kong from 15:00 until 17:00.
An August 5 general strike in Hong Kong resulted in severe transportation disruptions, including flight and public transportation cancelations, and violent clashes between protesters and police. Although the upcoming strikes and rallies are intended to pass off peacefully, violent clashes are possible. Severe transportation disruptions and a heightened security presence are to be expected throughout Hong Kong during protest activity.
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 The bill has been suspended, though not fully withdrawn.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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