The Hong Kong police said on Tuesday that rioters have been wreaking havoc to Hong Kong since Monday and 287 people were arrested, of whom over 60 percent were students.
"Over the past two days, our society has been pushed to the brink of a total breakdown as rioters went on a rampage in residential neighborhoods and university campuses," Senior Superintendent of Police Public Relations Branch Kong Wing-cheung told a press conference.
Roads at as many as 50 locations were damaged or obstructed and over 160 traffic lights smashed. Hong Kong's traffic was largely affected, with rioters throwing objects, such as petrol bombs and bicycles on subway tracks and puncturing tires of buses, according to Kong.
Masked mobs also wreaked havoc at universities, Kong said. At the Chinese University of Hong Kong, for instance, bows and arrows were seen, petrol bombs and bricks were thrown at police officers.
"We are very alarmed by the trend that more and more young students are participating in these rioting acts. Indeed, yesterday, out of the 287 arrested people, 187 were students. This is over 60 percent," Kong said, adding that 11 police officers were injured during operations.
The arrested people included 206 males and 81 females, aged between 12 and 82 years old. They were arrested for unlawful assembly, possession of offensive weapons and criminal damage.
Talking about a 57-year-old man that was burnt by rioters in Ma On Shan, the New Territories, on Monday, Kong said the case has been classified as attempted murder. The man suffered severe burnt in his head and upper body and was in critical condition in hospital.
"Hong Kong's rule of law has been pushed to the brink of total collapse as masked rioters recklessly escalate their violence," Kong said that no civilized society can tolerate these dangerous level of violence regardless of political motives or causes.
Kong appealed to the public to do whatever it can to end the violence immediately.