Hong Kong protests: Demonstrators return to reclaim Mong Kok sit-in site

Pro-democracy demonstrators face police during a standoff amid ongoing protests in the Mongkok district of Hong Kong on Oct 17, 2014. Fresh clashes broke out as pro-democracy demonstrators attempted to take back a protest camp in a densely populated
Pro-democracy demonstrators face police during a standoff amid ongoing protests in the Mongkok district of Hong Kong on Oct 17, 2014. Fresh clashes broke out as pro-democracy demonstrators attempted to take back a protest camp in a densely populated suburb that had been partially cleared by police earlier in the day. -- PHOTO: AFP

TENSIONS are running high at Mong Kok, where police and some 1,000 protesters are facing off.

The protesters are trying to reclaim their sit-in site along Nathan Road, which was cleared by the police early Friday morning in a swift and efficient operation. Traffic resumed after that.

Later in the day, word went out on the Internet calling for people to gather at Mong Kok at night.

Crowds began gathering in the evening, and shortly before 8pm, the police began using pepper spray to disperse them.

"Triads, triads," chanted the protesters, in an insult to the helmeted police.

Some protesters began to move onto one side of Nathan Road, blocking the flow of traffic.

A few people were handcuffed and hauled into police vehicles.

With Mong Kok cleared, the only sizeable protest site left is at Harcourt Road in Admiralty.

The latest clashes came as the Hong Kong Federation of Students said that they hope to hold talks with the government before next Wednesday.

Both sides agreed Thursday to reopen the doors to negotiations.