Hong Kong braces for largest citywide strike in decades

epa07755043 A garbage bin on fire while anti-extradition bill protesters attend a rally in Hong Kong, China, 03 Aug. 2019. Hong Kong is bracing itself for a ninth consecutive weekend of multiple anti-extradition demonstrations and a planned citywide strike on 05 August 2019. EPA-EFE/JEROME FAVRE

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Hong Kong police said on Sunday they arrested more than 20 people after violent clashes with anti-government protesters overnight, as the Chinese-controlled territory braced for more protests and a general strike aimed to bring the city to a halt.

Twin demonstrations are planned for Sunday, one in Tseung Kwan O in the eastern New Territories and another across the harbor in Kennedy Town on the northwestern end of Hong Kong Island. Protesters have also organized general strikes for Monday morning, as well as demonstrations in seven different parts of the city.

They come amid the ninth consecutive weekend of political unrest, which began in opposition to a controversial bill that would have allowed extradition to mainland China but has since extended to more ambitious demands like universal suffrage. The city’s leader, Carrie Lam, has shelved the extradition bill but not formally withdrawn it.

Hong Kong is bracing for the largest citywide strike in decades on Monday, after about 14,000 people from 20 sectors vowed to join the industrial action against the now-abandoned extradition bill, first called for by staff unions of transport operators and social workers.

But business leaders have warned the employees of a government and an economic backlash.

Protesters were set to launch the strike in eight districts — Admiralty, Mong Kok, Sha Tin, Tai Po, Tsuen Wan, Wong Tai Sin, Tuen Mun and around the theme park Hong Kong Disneyland Resort.

Via Reuters / CNN / South China Morning Post

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