HIGHLIGHTS: #OccupyCentral Hong Kong

HIGHLIGHTS: #OccupyCentral Hong Kong
For photos, videos, and other updates from Hong Kong, follow our live blog

MANILA, Philippines – “Occupy Central starts now.” Citizens of Hong Kong took to the streets Sunday, September 28, to defy China’s unwillingness to grant full democracy to the special administrative region. (READ: Tear gas fired at chaotic democracy protests

Protestors couldn’t wait until Wednesday, October 1, the original protest date. Occupy Central co-founder Benny Tai said the rally would now merge with the student-led protests outside government headquarters. (READ: Hong Kong activists launch mass pro-democracy campaign

The number of protestors on the ground were estimated at 10,000 in the beginning and swelled to 60,000 at its peak. While violent protests are rare in Hong Kong, media outlets reported several scuffles between police in riot gear and demonstrators who were agitated by the use of tear gas.

Hong Kong-based writer Jason Y. Ng shares with Rappler these photos from the ground. 

FIRST ROUND. Protestors wear masks to protect themselves from teargas being fired, a chemical rarely used in the city. Photo by Jason Y Ng

“The HK police have gone mad!” Ng said in a Facebook post. “This isn’t Syria or Gaza. This is Hong Kong, our Hong Kong.”

FULL GEAR. The sight of police in full gear terrified many residents and protestors. Photo by Jason Y Ng
All hands are on deck for Hong Kong police. Unrest is rarely seen in the semi-autonomous region. Barricades put up by protestors looked like it came straight out of a movie.
BARRICADE. A barricade is left by students as night fell. Photo by Jason Y Ng
Netizens have begun tweeting and posting photos of chaotic scenes from the ground using #OccupyCentral – referring to Hong Kong’s Central District – and #HongKong.
For more photos, videos, and reports from citizens on the ground, follow our live blog below. You can also share your own photos from the protests by tweeting @rapplerdotcom. 

with reports from Agence France-Presse/Rappler.com

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