Where is all this going? That was the question many in Hong Kong were asking themselves Monday, as the city saw a seventh weekend of protests take a darker, more violent turn. On Friday, police raided a nondescript warehouse in an industrial area of the city, seizing a large cache of high-powered explosives, petrol bombs and other weapons. Three men, all in their twenties with alleged links to a pro-independence group, have been arrested in connection with the seizure.
Following another anti-government march Sunday, masked men, wielding iron bars and bamboo sticks, rushed into a metro station in Yuen Long, in the far northwest of Hong Kong, and indiscriminately attacked anyone wearing black or other identifiers of the protest movement.
At least 45 people were injured, some seriously, and videos showed people being beaten on the floor and left bloodied and dazed. Police took several hours to arrive on the scene, further outraging protesters and increasing bitterness between them and the force.
No developments have so far shown any signs of dampening the protests, with a new rally already planned for Yuen Long this weekend, but nor is there any sign the government is ready to make the kind of concessions that could mollify enough anger to restore calm.