But the celebrations were bittersweet, after clashes erupted in a gritty neighborhood amid a crackdown on Street Vendors, in the worst violence since pro-democracy protests in late 2014.
Riot Police used batons and pepper spray early on Tuesday to disperse crowds who were stirred when authorities tried to move illegal street vendors known as “hawkers” from a working-class district.
Police fired two shots into the air, a police spokeswoman said, amid chaotic scenes. Protesters hurled bricks at police as scuffles broke out, while other demonstrators set fire to rubbish bins in the streets of Mong Kok, just across the harbor from the heart of the Asian financial center.
The narrow streets in and around Mong Kok were the scene of some of the most violent clashes during protests in late 2014 to demand greater democracy in the former British colony that returned to Beijing rule in 1997.
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