Anti-government protesters in Hong Kong began circulating plans on Monday to “stress test” the Bank of China in their bid to keep pressure on the city’s pro-Beijing leaders, after five people were arrested in the latest clashes with police.
The city has been plunged into its worst crisis in recent history following a month of huge marches as well as separate violent confrontations with police involving a minority of hardcore protesters.
The rallies were sparked by a now-suspended law that would have allowed extraditions to mainland China, but have since morphed into a wider movement calling for democratic reforms and a halt to sliding freedoms in the semi-autonomous territory.
Sunday night saw fresh political violence break out in the district of Mongkok as police baton-charged small groups of masked, largely young protesters who were walking along roads and refused to disperse following another massive, peaceful rally earlier in the day.
Police said the group were taking part in an “unlawful assembly” and had been warned that officers would take action.
“Some protesters resisted and police arrested five persons for assaulting a police officer and obstructing a police officer in the execution of duties,” a statement said.
Another protester was arrested earlier in the day for failing to provide identification during a stop and search.