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‘They’re being used’: Hong Kong protests divide neighbourhoods

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In some neighbourhoods like North Point, scuffles have broken out between pro-Beijing supporters (L) and protesters or media

Hong Kong’s pro-democracy protesters boast of a broad support base but their movement has divided some neighbourhoods, including Wong Tai Sin, where many police officers live.

Poppy Chan, the wife of a police officer, was preparing dinner for her family when she heard the crash of a brick shattering the window of her third-floor apartment.

Tear gas flooded the home she shares with her two young daughters, her husband, and a domestic worker, in a complex where many police live with their families.

“At that moment, I was more scared than angry,” she told AFP.

“Maybe they don’t know that what they’re doing is very wrong.”

“I just think it’s really sad, because it seems like they’re being used by others,” she added.

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Chan’s family had cowered inside the apartment during three days of running protests in the neighbourhood. When the brick came sailing into their home, she decided it was time to leave.

She packed some of their belongings and fled to a friend’s place.

The Wong Tai Sin neighbourhood has seen some of the worst clashes in protests that began in opposition to a bill allowing extraditions to mainland China.

The Wong Tai Sin neighbourhood, home to many police officers, has seen some of the worst clashes in protests that began in opposition to a bill allowing extraditions to mainland China

The protests have morphed into a broader movement seeking greater democratic freedoms in the international financial hub.

It has won support from a cross section of society, with lawyers, civil servants, older people and parents with small children turning out to rallies.

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AFP

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