Police have fired volleys of tear gas to try to push back a crowd gathering in Causeway Bay for an unauthorised march.

Protesters have been gathering in the area for what’s being labelled as a “global anti-totalitarian march”, with similar demonstrations planned around the world.

The section of Hennessy Road outside Sogo was briefly blanketed with smoke as dozens of riot police moved in to clear the streets. However the protesters, appeared to take this as a signal to start the march, and quickly took over both lanes of the road.

Riot police have also been stopping and searching black-clad people in the area. One woman in the area said the police behaviour was inappropriate.

“I think we have the freedom of assembly, and all they’re doing is merely walking on the street, wearing black and being young. I don’t think that’s any excuse to prosecute or search them.

By around 2.40pm the demonstrators had split into two groups, one heading towards Wan Chai and the other towards North Point.

Many shops have shut ahead of the unauthorised march.

Hysan, the Sogo Department store and the World Trade Centre were among the retailers announcing they would close.

The shops are taking precautions after online calls for people to take part in what’s being labelled as a “global anti-totalitarian march”, with similar protests planned around the world.

The march – from Sogo to government headquarters – has not been approved by police.

Meanwhile security has been tightened around government headquarters in Admiralty after Saturday’s clashes. A water cannon truck, an armoured vehicle and several police vans were seen driving inside the compound.

Outside, at least two tiers of barricades have been set up by the police and a main access route to the area – the foot bridge from Admiralty Centre – has been blocked by barriers and steel gates

At the Legislative Council building where a red security alert was issued on Saturday, water-filled barriers have been set up outside the protest area.
Last updated: 2019-09-29 HKT 14:45