Riot police in Hong Kong have used teargas and water cannon to disperse anti-government protesters attending an unauthorized march in the Chinese city, which has been rocked by violent rallies over the past four months.
Violence broke out on Sunday after protesters started throwing petrol bombs at police forces and their station during an illegal march through the Kowloon district of Hong Kong.
Along their route, the protesters also trashed shops and metro stations and set fire to public property with Molotov cocktails.
Riot police were forced to fire multiple rounds of teargas. They used loudspeakers to call on the protesters to disperse.
The semi-autonomous Chinese territory has been the scene of protests since June, when people took to the streets initially against a proposed extradition bill.
The bill was later withdrawn, but the protests have continued and taken on an increasingly violent form, with masked individuals vandalizing public and private property and attacking security forces and government buildings.
The protesters now want complete separation from mainland China.
The Chinese government says Western countries, mainly the United States and Britain, have been provoking the protesters by issuing statements of support. Beijing has asked those countries to stop meddling in Hong Kong’s affairs.
Hong Kong has been governed under a “one-country, two-system” model since the city, a former British colony, was returned to China in 1997.