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Hong Kong police lay siege at fortified university

Credit: Reuters Studio
Published 3 weeks ago - Duration: 02:21s

Hong Kong police lay siege at fortified university

Police fired tear gas and rubber bullets as they pinned protesters inside a university on Monday, as China warned the UK and other Western powers not to meddle in its affairs.

David Doyle reports.

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Hong Kong police lay siege at fortified university

Hong Kong's Polytechnic University was in flames on Monday (November 18) as police laid siege to the educational institution-turned-fortress.

Amid fears of a bloody crackdown, many anti-government protesters tried to flee only to be pinned down by volleys of tear gas and rubber bullets.

Some were arrested, others forced to scramble back over the barricades to the relative safety inside.

Footage also showed police moving into the buildings.

This student journalist was told to lie on the ground in a medical center before being led out into the campus that now looks like a battlefield.

The Polytechnic University is the last of several campuses to remain occupied and has been used as a base to block the busy Cross-Harbor tunnel.

But after a weekend of mayhem, in which a bridge was set on fire and a police officer shot in the leg with an arrow, Hong Kong's police said the university had become a "powder keg." (SOUNDBITE) (English) REGIONAL COMMANDER OF KOWLOON WEST, CHEUK HAU-YIP SAYING: "I would warn the rioters, don't test our bottom line.

I have one fellow officer shot by arrow already.

This is a very long range weapon used by the rioters.

And if we have to respond, I believe the only option is to use deadly weapons." Protesters are angry at perceived police brutality and at what they see as Chinese meddling in the freedoms promised to Hong Kong when the British colony was returned to Chinese rule in 1997.

But on Monday China had a message to the former colonial power and other Western nations - stop interfering.

(SOUNDBITE) (English) CHINESE AMBASSADOR TO THE UK, LIU XIAOMING, SAYING: "and immediately stop condoning violent offenses otherwise they will lift the stone only to drop it on their own feet." A spokesman for British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said the UK is seriously concerned about the situation in Hong Kong and called for safe passage for all those who wish to leave the university.

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