Warning Alert | Nov. 18: 4:11 p.m. EST
Standoff continues at Polytechnic University in Hong Kong, China, as of early Nov. 19. Additional clashes likely.
This alert began 18 Nov 2019 21:07 GMT and is scheduled to expire 19 Nov 2019 23:59 GMT.
- Incident: Protests
- Location: Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, especially Hong Kong Polytechnic University
- Time Frame: Indefinite
- Impact: Heightened security; business and transport disruptions; clashes
Protesters continue a days-long standoff with police at Hong Kong Polytechnic University as of early Nov. 19. Police have surrounded the campus, preventing activists and students from leaving. Officers and protesters have been clashing in the area in recent days, with demonstrators fortifying entrances to the campus and using petrol bombs, arrows, and other weapons to prevent police from entering the premises. Security forces have fired tear gas and used water cannon in the area and have reportedly arrested dozens of demonstrators. As of early Nov. 19, there were reportedly around 200 people still inside the university, with security personnel preventing most from leaving, although some did manage to do so. Additional clashes and violence are likely near the campus.
Activists may attempt to march to the Hong Kong Polytechnic University campus from nearby areas. Late Nov. 18, protesters clashed with police during an attempt to reach the university from Jordan and Tsim Sha Tsui. Officers could respond with tear gas and water cannon, and fighting could occur in these locations and nearby areas of Kowloon. Additional demonstrations are likely and may lead to localized transport and business disruptions, particularly if police move to disperse the gatherings.
Ground transport disruptions are highly likely to continue. Hong Kong Mass Transit Railway (MTR) continues to experience interruptions. As of late Nov. 18, officials had halted services at Tsim Sha Tsui, Jordan, Yau Ma Tei, Mong Kok, Kwai Fong, Hong Kong University, Causeway Bay, and Sai Wan Ho MTR stations. While officials are attempting to maintain service during the demonstrations, authorities may close stations and alter or suspend MTR and light rail service due to protest activity and poor safety conditions. Roadblocks, clashes, and security measures will continue to cause localized traffic disruptions in areas where demonstrations are occurring.
Avoid Hong Kong Polytechnic University and the surrounding area, if possible. Monitor local media for protest updates, as demonstrators are unlikely to announce plans in advance. Avoid rally sites due to the threat of localized clashes. Immediately leave the area and shelter in a secure, nongovernmental building if violence erupts. Confirm appointments and transport reservations. Make allowances for possible business disruptions. Consider work-from-home or early-release arrangements. Allow extra time for ground transportation. Avoid politically sensitive conversations in public areas, and do not take photographs of protesters or police activity.