Chaos ensued at a Hong Kong shopping mall as local residents gathered to protest against mainlanders who flock to the territory to buy goods.
People in Hong Kong have long voiced complaints over mainland visitors who they accuse of ‘hogging resources’ by buying out shelves of products at lower tax rates then selling them across the border.
The onslaught of shoppers from the mainland has pushed up prices of items ranging from milk powder to real estate.
Angry protestors gathered at the New Town Plaza shopping mall in Sha Tin on Sunday and heckled mainland shoppers, whom some of the more critical Hongkongers refer to as “locusts”.
As violence erupted, police were dispatched to the scene equipped with batons and pepper spray to maintain order, according to NetEase.
A protestor’s sign reads: “Chinese people, go back to China!”
SCMP reports that Sunday’s was one of many escalated scenes in Hong Kong’s shopping districts ahead of Chinese New Year, as so-called “parallel traders” have arrived in the territory in masses to stock up on gifts and food.
More than one protestor waved a Hong Kong colonial-era flag, a symbol for the pro-independence movement following the handover of the former British colony to China.
Watch the FT video report here:
[Images via Weibo // NetEase]