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Hong Kong’s protesters have hardened their resistance – now some want a revolution | UK News

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Once again Hong Kong’s air is thick with tear gas.

Angry and determined, it’s protesters versus police in what is now a familiar game of cat and mouse.

After hundreds of thousands peacefully marched in the day, when night fell fresh clashes again broke out.

Officers with shields, rubber bullets, pepper spray and tear gas spent hours slowly clearing crowds of angry, young demonstrators after they blockaded the China Liaison Office.

Wave after wave, the tear gas and pepper spray came in, choking and temporarily blinding everyone in its path.

Riot police attempt to remove an improvised barricade created by protesters
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Riot police attempt to remove an improvised barricade created by protesters

As police lines moved forward, we saw protesters throw bottles and paint as well as smouldering pellets that left your eyes watering.

Almost two months of demonstrations have hardened this resistance and strengthened their resolve, everyone I asked said they won’t give up until their demands are met.

Protesters run from tear gas fired by police
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Protesters run from tear gas fired by police
Organisers have claimed that 430,000 people participated in the pro-democracy march
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Organisers claimed 430,000 people took party in the pro-democracy march

And that list of demands has lengthened and evolved, a battle against an extradition bill has now, for some, become a fight for full democracy- freedom from a Beijing-backed government.

Among the chants, they shouted “liberate Hong Kong” – some are now calling for revolution.

The action started earlier in the evening when groups barricaded roads, trapping people in their cars.

A few in the crowd turned, attacking a driver when he tried to push back before they were shouted down and restrained by their peers.

But others who were stranded in their cars said it was a worrying change in tone.

Tear gas has been fired to disperse the protesters
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Tear gas has been fired to disperse the protesters

The government has again condemned the violence, criticising those in the pro-democracy camp, but also pro-government groups who attacked commuters in northern Hong Kong.

But condemnation will not cow the opposition and with no solution in sight this cycle will keep repeating.

The clashes with authorities are now becoming an almost weekly occurrence for a minority and they will not back down, they will not stop as some firmly believe this is their last chance to save this city.



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Coronavirus outbreak: Britons set to be evacuated from Wuhan | World News

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UK officials will try to evacuate all Britons from the epicentre of the coronavirus outbreak on Thursday – as the Foreign Office warns against all but essential travel to mainland China.

Hong Kong and Macau are not affected by the new travel advice.

There are believed to be about 300 UK citizens still in the city of Wuhan and the surrounding Hubei province.

China said a total of 106 people have now died in the country following the crisis, with more than 4,515 confirmed cases across the nation.

Both numbers rose dramatically in the latest update from the National Health Commission, with most of those affected hailing from Wuhan – the centre of the outbreak.

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Trump unveils Middle East peace plan which is ‘win-win’ for Israel and Palestinians | World News

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Donald Trump has unveiled his long-awaited Middle East peace plan, saying the “realistic” two-state solution is a “win-win opportunity” for both Israel and the Palestinians.

Speaking at the White House, the US president said his administration’s vision would form the basis of direct negotiations between the two sides which was a “historic breakthrough”.

The proposal calls for the creation of a State of Palestine with its capital in parts of east Jerusalem and it more than doubles the territory currently under Palestinian control.

But it also recognises Israeli sovereignty over major settlement blocs in the West Bank, something to which the Palestinians will almost certainly object.

The Palestinians have already rejected the proposal, accusing Mr Trump of being biased in favour of Israel as he has adopted policies that boost Israel at their expense.

Mr Trump and Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu together for Mr Trump's announcement
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Mr Trump was joined by Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu for the announcement

However, the US president, speaking alongside Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, said Israel was taking a “giant step toward peace” and Palestinians deserved the chance for a better life.

Mr Trump said the deal was a “historic opportunity” for Palestinians to achieve an independent state of their own.

He said his vision will end the cycle of Palestinian dependence on charity and foreign aid, as he urged peaceful co-existence between the two sides.

The American leader said he told Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas that if he chooses peace then the US and other countries “will be there every step of the way to help”.

And urging peace in the region, Mr Trump said it was time for “this sad chapter in history to end”.

Mr Netanyahu said he has agreed to negotiate with the Palestinians because the peace plan “strikes a balance”.

However, an official with the ruling Hamas group in Gaza called Mr Trump’s statement “aggressive” and said the Jerusalem plan was “nonsense”.

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Thailand ‘not able to stop the spread’ of new coronavirus | World News

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Subtle changes are seeping into daily life in Bangkok.

Thermal scanners now stand at the doors of luxury malls and attendants pump disinfectant into the hands of visitors as they stream in.

With 14 cases, Thailand now has the highest confirmed number of coronavirus infections outside China and people are starting to worry.

Disinfectant is pumped into people's hands as they go shopping
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Disinfectant is pumped into people’s hands as they go shopping

“It’s spreading so fast and the information is so hidden, we don’t know the whole picture,” young mother Cathy told me.

Even her four-year-old son obediently wears a surgical mask.

“I’m worried that I’ll get sick and stay in hospital and there isn’t a vaccine,” commuter Nan added.

Already popular because of pollution, face masks are selling out.

The armour of choice, there are none to be found in one of the main shopping districts

“Finished,” shop assistants tell us again and again as we search for fresh supplies.

There are thermal scanners in shopping malls
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There are thermal scanners in shopping malls

Thailand is a top foreign holiday destination for tourists from Wuhan.

About 22,000 people from the city at the centre of the coronavirus outbreak have visited in January alone.

Six new cases were confirmed today, five of them involving a family from China’s Hubei province, and the sixth from Chongqing province.

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While all arrivals from China will now be screened and thermal scanned for signs of the disease, the coronavirus is believed to be contagious during the incubation period.

Thus it is feared that while visitors may not have any symptoms, they could in theory be spreading the infection.

That concern is helping to prompt criticism of the government’s response to the crisis.

Public Health Minister Anutin Charnvirakul says they 'expect more people to get sick'
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Public health minister Anutin Charnvirakul says they ‘expect more people to get sick’

The hashtag #crapgovernment was trending top on Twitter in Thailand at the weekend as users complained about the management of the virus and other health issues.

The country’s prime minister says the situation is under control but public health minister Anutin Charnvirakul admitted to Sky News that he expects the number of infections to rise.

“We are not able to stop the spread,” he said.

“Our target is we will be able to detect all carriers entering Thailand and we will apply necessary measures as the situation develops.

“Of course we expect more people to get sick but we are able to identify all of them.”

There is no way of knowing how many more coronavirus infections will emerge in the coming days and weeks, so residents must continue to protect themselves as best they can.

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