Protests against China in Hong Kong gets uglier

Hong Kong police fired beanbag rounds and used pepper spray in late night skirmishes with pro-democracy protesters, broadcaster RTHK said on Wednesday, as unrest that has gripped the Chinese-ruled city for months showed little sign of abating. Hundreds of thousands of people have taken to the streets since mid-June in sometimes violent protests calling for greater democracy in the former British colony, posing a direct challenge to the central Chinese government in Beijing.

Riot police cleared demonstrators from outside the Mong Kok police station and in Prince Edward metro station, with one person taken out on a stretcher with an oxygen mask over his face, government-funded RTHK reported.Metro stations have often become the frontline in battles between masked protesters and police, deepening the biggest political crisis in the Asian financial hub since the handover of power from Britain to China in 1997.