This Is What the Streets of Hong Kong Look Like Now

Tens of thousands of protesters bring financial district to standstill.

ByAbc News
September 29, 2014, 12:27 PM

— -- The streets of Hong Kong are filling up by the thousands as largely peaceful pro-democracy protests that started this weekend grow even larger.

The city's financial district has been brought to a virtual standstill -- with crowds blocking major thoroughfares. Protesters even held a 'mobile light vigil' today, instead of using candles as their protest continued into the night.

PHOTO: Protesters wave their cell phones in the air in the streets outside the Hong Kong Government Complex on Sept. 29, 2014 in Hong Kong.
Protesters wave their cell phones in the air in the streets outside the Hong Kong Government Complex on Sept. 29, 2014 in Hong Kong.
Chris McGrath/Getty Images

Police started using teargas on Sunday against the protesters, many of whom are students, but it may have backfired as thousands of office workers came to the protests after work to help show their support.

PHOTO: Pro-democracy protesters sit on a road as they face-off with local police, Sept. 29, 2014 in Hong Kong.
Pro-democracy protesters sit on a road as they face-off with local police, Sept. 29, 2014 in Hong Kong.
Wong Maye-E/AP Photo
PHOTO: Protesters gather in the streets outside the Hong Kong Government Complex on Sept. 29, 2014 in Hong Kong.
Protesters gather in the streets outside the Hong Kong Government Complex on Sept. 29, 2014 in Hong Kong.
Chris McGrath/Getty Images

"The students are protecting the right to vote, for Hong Kong's future. We are not scared, we are not frightened, we just fight for it," Carol Chan, a 55-year-old civil service employee, told The Associated Press. She said her decision to take two days off from work to join the protests came after seeing the use of tear gas.

Though they defended their earlier decision to fire 87 rounds of tear gas, police changed their tactics today by manning barricades and preventing protesters from entering buildings but generally avoiding interference, the Associated Press reported.

PHOTO: Riot police leave an area in front of the government headquarters as protesters block the main street to the financial Central district in Hong Kong, Sept. 29, 2014
Riot police leave an area in front of the government headquarters as protesters block the main street to the financial Central district in Hong Kong, Sept. 29, 2014. Hong Kong democracy protesters defied volleys of tear gas and police baton charges to stand firm in the centre of the global financial hub, one of the biggest political challenges for Beijing since the Tiananmen Square crackdown 25 years ago.
Carlos Barria / Reuters

Control of Hong Kong was handed over from the British to the Chinese in 1997, but the democratic rights of residents remain a point of controversy.

The protests came when students threatened to 'occupy' the financial district after a ruling was handed down in Beijing that restricts the free elections that are scheduled to be held in 2017.

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