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Rioters firebomb metro stations, vandalise properties in renewed violence in Hong Kong

Black-clad masked rioters went on rampage again in Hong Kong on Sunday afternoon, firebombing and trashing metro stations, and vandalising public and private properties in renewed violence, as the prolonged social unrest entered the fifth month.

They threw petrol bombs at or set fires to the exits of the East Tsim Sha Tsui, Yau Ma Tei and Mong Kok stations of the Mass Transit Railway (MTR), soon after a large number of masked people, mostly dressed in black, ignored police objection and started building road barricades in an unauthorised demonstration in Kowloon.

Many masked rioters used umbrellas to cover their wrongdoings while vandalising facilities at the MTR stations and trashing stores believed to be operated by people who disagreed with them. Those participants were committing the offence of “participating in an unauthorised assembly,” the Hong Kong police said, urging them to stop their illegal acts immediately.

Traffic on several roads in Tsim Sha Tsui has been seriously disrupted, and at least two shopping malls and most stores at the Chungking Mansions near the once-popular tourist areas were forced to close. Due to safety concerns, the MTR, operator of Hong Kong’s railway network, closed the Austin and Tsim Sha Tsui stations.

The report room services of the Tsim Sha Tsui police station was temporarily suspended. Rioting and violence have engulfed Hong Kong over the past four months, particularly during the weekend, as black-clad masked radicals and rioters repeatedly went on the rampage to attack police officers, vandalise public and private properties, and commit arson or beat up people who disagreed with them. -Xinhua

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