Three people in critical condition as protests rock 'heavy-hearted' Hong Kong
04/11/2019 10:04, Hong Kong/China

(TAP) - Three people were in critical condition in Hong Kong on Monday, authorities said, after a weekend of chaotic clashes with anti-government protesters that led China to call for a tougher stance to end months of unrest in the Asian financial hub.

The injuries were the result of yet another weekend of violence in the former British colony. Riot police stormed several shopping malls packed with families and children including Cityplaza in the eastern suburb of Taikoo Shing on Sunday.

Protesters there had initially formed a human chain before facing off with police in skirmishes up and down escalators and spraying graffiti on a restaurant.

A man with a knife slashed several people and bit off part of a politician's ear. The wounded included a man believed to be the knife-wielder, whom protesters had beaten with sticks.

The city's Hospital Authority said three people were in critical condition, with two others in serious condition, among a total of 30 injuries from Sunday.

A student at Shue Yan University was hit by a tear gas canister and suffered a severe burn in a separate incident at the weekend, the university's student union said in a statement.

While the Chinese-controlled city and its many businesses function normally during the week, many protests have sprung up spontaneously at weekends over the past five months.

Pro-democracy protesters are campaigning against what they see as Chinese meddling with Hong Kong's promised freedoms.

China denies doing so and has blamed Western countries for stirring up trouble.

More demonstrations are planned this week as the protesters keep up pressure for demands that include an independent inquiry into police behaviour and universal suffrage.

"We really see that people are very heavy-hearted. They don't know what is going to happen tonight or maybe the next weekend. And there is a lot of worry," pro-democracy lawmaker Charles Mok told Reuters.

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