Hong Kong pro-democracy demonstrators have clashed with dozens of masked men at the main protest site in the city centre as police struggled to contain the chaos.
Masked men rushed barricades at the Admiralty site on Monday as protesters tried to guard the barriers and push the men back.
Two of the men were tackled to the ground by police, who also formed a cordon around the masked group as protesters shouted: “Weapons! Weapons!” and “Arrest the triads”.
Several hundred people gathered in front of protesters’ barricades on the main road, chanting, “Open the road!”.
Television footage showed one masked man being forced to drop a small flick-knife.
Taxi drivers, many of whom have voiced frustration with more than two weeks of protests which have blocked roads and caused traffic gridlock, added to the fray by converging on the site in their cars, beeping horns and shouting at demonstrators.
Some had “We can’t take it any more” printed on the fronts of their cabs.
Other groups opposed to the “Occupy” pro-democracy campaign also appeared at Admiralty, chanting “Occupy is illegal” and demanding that roads be reopened.
Police formed a line in front of the anti-Occupy protesters as trucks with cranes arrived on the scene and began removing barricades.