HONG KONG: Hong Kong faced a third straight day of traffic disruptions after protesters went on another rampage in various districts.Commuters packed onto the first trains yesterday morning amid calls by protesters to impede rush hour traffic.
Several MTR Corp services, including the Mong Kok and Tuen Mun stations, were already shut due to vandalism.
Numerous bus lines were also halted and several schools suspended classes.
The protests, which stemmed from the extradition Bill incident, have been raging for five months. Hong Kong chief executive Carrie Lam has vowed not to give in to violent protests.
MTR Corp said on its website yesterday that the entire service of Tsuen Wan Line, as well as partial services of the West Rail Line and Kwun Tong Line had been suspended.
The Hung Hom and Tung Chung stations were also closed.
There were long queues outside some MTR stations as commuters waited for buses or taxis.
Major bus operator the Kowloon Motor Bus Company announced that it could only offer limited services along 19 routes, while the New World First Bus and Citybus said only 48 routes were running.
The Labour Department urged employers to make flexible work arrangements if employees were unable to work on time due to disrupted road traffic or public transport services.
Some bus services were cancelled or diverted as Tolo Highway had yet to be re-opened. Traffic on major roads were also affected, according to a government press release issued yesterday morning.
At illegal gatherings in Central, Kowloon Tong, Tai Po and Mong Kok, radicals built barricades, put nails on roads, set fire and destroyed pavement and traffic lights. They also hurled petrol bombs and threw bricks at police.
Rioters also set a police vehicle on fire, assaulted a truck driver and put nails on roads.
A large group of radicals gathered in the Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK), holding chain saws and bamboo sticks.
In clashes with police, they shot arrows, threw gasoline bombs and pointed laser pens at police officers.
Barricades erected by radicals were hit by gasoline bombs and caught on fire, and an explosion was heard at the scene. Trees and a sedan were also set ablaze.
CUHK announced another day of suspension of classes yesterday as roads were cut off and facilities were seriously damaged by violent protesters. — China Daily/ANN