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Monday
September 2019
12:25 PM IST
News Headlines
Sourabh wins Vietnam Open Super 100 title        England close in on Ashes-levelling win after Broad double        Air India posts Rs 4,600 cr operating loss in 2018-19; aims operating profit this fiscal        SBI to move RBI to offer fixed-floating rate home-loans: Chairman        Hong Kong returns to violence with tear gas and Molotovs        36 people missing after boat sinks in Congo river: DRC police        Underfire PM calls up Hulk, claims 'huge' Brexit progress        Dearth of quality people in north India: Labour minister on unemployment        Will implement NRC in Haryana, says Khattar        One nation-one language will never be a reality: Jairam Ramesh        21 Indians killed in 2,050 ceasefire violations by Pak this year: MEA        We need to take advantage of India's inexperienced pace attack: Klusener        India's contrasting training camps at World Championships        Inflation under control, clear signs of revival in factory output: FM        China to lift punitive tariffs on US soybeans, pork        Former PM Cameron 'sorry' for Brexit divisions        Pakistani cleric Tahirul Qadri quits politics, resigns from party        Afghan government says elections first, peace deal after        My govt committed to the welfare of peasants & also to promote industry: Mamata        Amend Constitution to ensure use of Indian languages in SC, high courts: Paswan        
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International News
Hong Kong protesters rally to show 'peaceful' credentials after chaos
 
Hong Kong: Tens of thousands of Hong Kong democracy activists gathered Sunday for a major rally to show the city's leaders their protest movement still attracts wide public support despite mounting violence and increasingly stark warnings from Beijing.

Ten weeks of demonstrations have plunged the financial hub into crisis with images of masked black-clad protesters engulfed by tear gas during street battles with riot police stunning a city once renowned for its stability.

Communist-ruled mainland China has taken an increasingly hardline tone towards the protesters, decrying the "terrorist-like" actions of a violent hardcore minority among the demonstrators.

Despite the near-nightly clashes with police, the movement has won few concessions from Beijing or the city's unelected leadership.

On Tuesday, protesters blocked passengers from boarding flights at the city's airport and later assaulted two men they accused of being Chinese spies.

The images damaged a campaign that until then had largely targeted the police or government institutions, and prompted an apology from some of the protest groups.

Sunday's rally at the city's Victoria Park is an attempt to wrestle the narrative of the protest back.

It is a "rational, non-violent" demonstration, according to organisers the Civil Human Rights Front, the driving force behind record-breaking rallies in June and July that saw hundreds of thousands of people hit the streets.

Police have given permission for the rally to go ahead but banned a proposed march.

Previous bans on marches have been ignored by protesters, leading to clashes with riot police.

"We expect a huge number of participants... we hope to show to the world Hong Kong people can be totally peaceful," Bonnie Leung, a spokeswoman for the Civil Human Rights Front told reporters.

"If Beijing and Hong Kong's tactic is to wait for our movement to die, they are wrong... we will soldier on." China's propaganda apparatus has seized on the weeks of violence, with state media churning out a deluge of damning articles, pictures and videos.

State media also ran images of military personnel and armoured personnel carriers across the border in Shenzhen, prompting the United States to warn Beijing against sending in troops.

Analysts say any intervention by Chinese security forces would be a reputational and economic disaster for China.

During smaller protest marches on Saturday -- which ended without large-scale clashes - many protesters chanted "See you in Victoria Park!" as they left the streets.

Tens of thousands of protesters massed in the park as the rally started on Sunday afternoon, while many others thronged the nearby streets in a show of defiance expected to stretch into the evening.

"I hope more people can make a step forward," protester Ray Cheung, 30, told AFP.

"We have tried many times with peaceful approaches... I really hope the government can listen to us." The unprecedented political crisis was sparked by opposition to a plan to allow extraditions to the mainland.

But protests have since morphed into a wider call for democratic rights in the semi-autonomous city.

Under a deal signed with Britain, authoritarian China agreed to allow Hong Kong to keep its unique freedoms when it was handed back in 1997.

But many Hong Kongers feel those freedoms are being chipped away, especially since China's hardline president Xi Jinping came to power.

In the last two months millions of people have hit the streets.

Battles between police firing tear gas and rubber bullets -- and hardcore protesters using rocks, Molotov cocktails and slingshots -- have since become routine in the city.

Both sides trade the blame for provoking the violence.

Beyond suspending the extradition bill, Beijing and city leader Carrie Lam have shown no desire to meet key demands such as an inquiry into police violence, the complete withdrawal of the bill and an amnesty.

Beijing has turned the screws on Hong Kong's businesses, pressuring them to toe the line and condemn the protesters.

On Friday, Cathay Pacific announced the shock resignation of CEO Rupert Hogg after the carrier was excoriated by Beijing because some staff supported the pro-democracy protests.

A day later the "Big Four" accountancy firms scrambled to distance themselves from an advert placed in a newspaper purportedly by employees saying they supported the protests.


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Google agrees to pay 965 mln euros to settle fiscal disputes with France
US extracted spy that confirmed Putin role in 2016 US vote: reports
Outgoing parliament deals new Brexit blow to British PM
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Hong Kong's Joshua Wong on way to Germany, US after brief detention
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Philippines confirms African swine fever, culls 7,000 pigs
Pak team leaves for Bangkok to hold meeting with FATF on terror financing
Ex-UK minister says Johnson not trying to get a Brexit deal
US 'not surprised' Iran starting new nuclear centrifuges: Esper
ENTERTAINMENT NEWS
'Game of Thrones' prequel series about Targaryen clan in works at HBO
 Los Angeles: HBO is moving ahead with yet another prequel show to its smash-hit series "Game of Thro  
It was intimidating directing Farhan, says Shonali Bose
Biopic on Steve McQueen in the works at Wonderfilm Media
'Face/Off' reboot in the works
KERALA NEWS
Tipplers guzzle Rs 487 crore worth liqour during onam
 Thiruvananthapuram: Tipplers in Kerala guzzled liqour worth a record Rs 487 crore sold through state
candidate selection for Pala by-election is an internal matter of KC(M): Chandy
Kevin Murder Case: Double life sentence for all 10 convicts
Malayalam actor, film crew stranded in Himachal village
NATIONAL NEWS
Dearth of quality people in north India: Labour minister on unemployment
 Lucknow: Union labour minister Santosh Kumar Gangwar has said there was no dearth of employment oppo
Will implement NRC in Haryana, says Khattar
One nation-one language will never be a reality: Jairam Ramesh
My govt committed to the welfare of peasants & also to promote industry: Mamata
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