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Hong Kong: Activists hole up in university in stand-off with police

Activists and police officers were in a stand-off at Hong Kong's Polytechnic University on Monday morning, local media reported.

Hong Kong, 18 November 2019 (dpa/MIA) – Activists and police officers were in a stand-off at Hong Kong’s Polytechnic University on Monday morning, local media reported.

University campuses have been the latest hotbed for fierce clashes between protesters and police. Multiple campuses across Hong Kong have since been vandalized and barricaded by black-clad protesters, who say they are defending the campuses from police.

Police had briefly stormed the campus in the early hours and detained several people, the South China Morning Post (SCMP) reported.

The police denied that they “raided” the premises of the university but in a statement spoke of a “dispersal and arrest operation” conducted around 5.30 am (2130 GMT Sunday).

Starting from midnight, protesters hurled petrol bombs at police and set objects on fire, according to the police statement.

Police urged everyone inside to leave the campus immediately.

It is unclear how many demonstrators are holed up in the campus. In comments to SCMP, lawmaker Ted Hui Chi-fung, who has stayed on the campus since Sunday, says supplies are running low and many activists are tired.

“The confrontations have paused for now, police can’t come in, but protesters can’t go out either,” Hui said.

Hong Kong pro-democracy protests started in opposition to a proposed law to allow extradition to mainland China, but the unrest has since evolved into calls for greater democratic reforms and an independent investigation into police violence.

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