Protesters set fire to hold off police at Hong Kong campus
The violence extended a dangerous new phase of the nearly six-month crisis, which over the weekend saw Chinese soldiers briefly leave their local barracks to clean up streets. China has refused to budge on any of the protesters’ key demands, which include free elections for the city of 7.5 million people. China has instead repeatedly warned it will not tolerate any dissent, and concerns are growing it could intervene directly to quell the unrest. On Monday several loud blasts were heard around dawn before a wall of fire lit up an entrance to the Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU), AFP reporters said, as what appeared to be a police attempt to enter the campus was repelled by protesters determined to hold their ground. Police said they had fired three live rounds in the early hours of Monday at a protest site near the university but that no one appeared to have been hit.