Hong Kong authorities arrested more than 200 people at a demonstration inside a shopping mall after during pro-democracy protest resumed on Monday morning (local time), said a Reuters report.
According to reports, some of the members of the media were caught in the chaos as police fired pepper spray at journalists and activists, and conducted stop and search operations on members of the public and media.
Reports said this has evoked memories of the sometimes violent unrest that rocked the global financial hub last year.
The Hospital Authority said 18 people were taken to hospital.
Footage showed protesters being subdued on the ground, scuffles, and people bleeding.
The Hong Kong Journalists’ Association (HKJA) said some members of the press were prevented from filming.
“Some journalists who were sprayed by pepper spray were not allowed to receive immediate treatment, and they were requested to stop filming,” said Chris Yeung, chairman of the HKJA.
Police in riot gear told protesters they were staging an illegal assembly and violating anti-virus measures that bar gatherings of more than eight people, said the report.
This serves as a prelude to activists’ call for two million people to gather for an annual march on 1 July which marks Hong Kong’s handover anniversary from British to Chinese rule in 1997.