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Hong Kong police declare China extradition protest 'a riot' as rubber bullets and tear gas fired at crowd Updated: 2019-06-13 07:01:27 KST

We start our world news with the protests in Hong Kong against a controversial bill on extradition. Developments are coming thick and fast as tens of thousands of angry demonstrators hit the streets on Wednesday to protest it.
For more on this and other news around the world, let's turn to our Hong Yoo.
This is turning more serious by the day. Give us the details.

Well, what started off as a peaceful demonstration, ended up in clashes between riot police and protesters on Wednesday afternoon.
Thousands of opponents of Hong Kong's new extradition bill that will allow suspects to be sent to mainland China for trial surrounded the city's government headquarters.

"Today the Hong Kong people want to tell the Hong Kong government that on the ninth of June, we had more than one million people coming out on the street, and we can't give up simply because the government ignored our demand, because this is our home."

"We only want to paralyse the legislative council, so please don't rush in, don't get beaten and don't let others make excuses for you, ok?"

Protesters blocked access to the area with barricades and when they refused to back down, riot police started using force to push them back.
Police were seen using batons, rubber bullets, and tear gas on demonstrators who were seen throwing water bottles and rocks at police.
It was some of the worst violence in Hong Kong since the island was handed back to China by the British in 1997.
At least 72 people were injured, including two classed as serious, according to the Hong Kong Hospital Authority.
Despite the outpouring of opposition, Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam looks set to plow ahead with the bill.

"I will not shy away from my responsibility in introducing a piece of legislation - though we are very convinced of the justifications - that's causing this public outcry and all this divisiveness in society. But sometimes, as a political leader you cannot shy away from difficult decisions."

Lam acknowledged the public outcry, but said it was necessary to close legal loopholes.
Uneasy calm is being observed in the early hours of Thursday as Hong Kong is bracing for possible further clashes.
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