Hong Kong protesters hit the streets as China marks 70 years of Communist rule

By Jessie Yeung, James Griffiths and Steve George, CNN

Updated 1:28 p.m. ET, October 1, 2019
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12:55 p.m. ET, October 1, 2019

Decision to shoot live round was "legal and reasonable," police commissioner says

From CNN’s Ivan Watson, Kenneth Leung and Ellie Lau

An 18-year-old man who was shot with a live round by police was arrested for assaulting an officer, police commissioner Stephen Lo Wai Chung said.

The man is still receiving treatment in hospital, the commissioner told reporters.

Lo said he believed police, who fired six shots on Tuesday, exercised restraint, but added that they will further investigate. Police will also decide whether to bring charges at a later time.

“The police by that moment didn’t have much choice and time to make decision [to use other less harmful weapons], his colleague was in serious danger, the decision of shooting a live round is therefore legal and reasonable,” Lo said.

Lo criticized demonstrators, saying their only objective was to vandalize and injure citizens.

“Today is a really sad for me," he said.

12:48 p.m. ET, October 1, 2019

More than 180 people arrested in Hong Kong protests

From CNN's Ivan Watson, Kenneth Leung and Ellie Lau

Hong Kong police arrested more than 180 people in protests across Hong Kong on Tuesday, police said.

Hong Kong's police commissioner called the day's rallies — which were held on China's National Day — the “most violent scenes” he has seen in the city. At least 25 officers were injured in the protests, he said.

11:28 a.m. ET, October 1, 2019

A CNN reporter was reporting live when police starting firing tear gas

From CNN's Julia Hollingsworth

As CNN's Anna Coren was reporting live outside of Hong Kong's Mong Kok police station, officer began firing what appeared to be tear gas at protesters and members of the media.

"They're firing tear gas at the media," she said as the sound of shots rang out. You can watch the moment in the video below.

Earlier, a police pointed a weapon at reporters gathered in the area, she said.

"There was a police officer telling us to move from the corner just there or he was going to shoot us," Coren said.

It was not clear what kind of ammunition was inside the gun.

CNN has emailed police for comment about that incident.

11:04 a.m. ET, October 1, 2019

Local residents are out on the streets, too

From CNN's Julia Hollingsworth

It’s not just protesters who are out tonight: Local residents are on Nathan Road in Hong Kong's Prince Edward. Unlike protesters, they’re not wearing gas masks or any protection — they’re just in T-shirts.

Many are yelling at the police line, taunting the riot police who are equipped with helmets and shields.

“Shoot your gun! You were so brave to shoot the protester,” some taunted, referring to the person who was shot earlier today.

“Shoot all of us!” some yelled angrily.

So far, the police haven’t responded.

10:42 a.m. ET, October 1, 2019

What the protests look like in Hong Kong's Prince Edward suburb

From CNN's Julia Hollingsworth

The scene in the suburb of Prince Edward in Hong Kong shows how fast things can change. 

Earlier, black-clad protesters gathered on Nathan Road. Some sheltered behind umbrellas, while others set off handheld fireworks in the direction of Mong Kok police station — a station that has often been targeted during the protest movement.

Suddenly, that all changed: Riot police charged from both ends of the road, chasing protesters down a side street.

Now, police are asking people to leave Prince Edward, but many bystanders are still milling about.

Here's a look at the scene from earlier today:

10:32 a.m. ET, October 1, 2019

Hong Kong police shot a protester today. It's the first gunshot injury of the 17 weeks of protests.

From CNN's Helen Regan and James Griffiths

A man was shot with a live round as violent protests erupted across Hong Kong on the 70th anniversary of the People's Republic of China today.

This is significant: While it is not the first time police have fired live warning shots, it is the first injury resulting from one since the protests began 17 weeks ago.

This video appears to show the moments before the officer shot a protester:

10:11 a.m. ET, October 1, 2019

It's been a long, eventful day. Here's what you need to know

It's 10 p.m. in Hong Kong and Beijing, the end of a long and eventful National Day that saw both celebration and chaos.

If you're just joining us now, here's what you need to know:

  • National Day: It was always going to be a big day. People in both cities have been preparing for weeks to mark the 70th anniversary of the founding of the People's Republic of China.
  • Beijing extravaganza: Today was filled with elaborate celebrations in the Chinese capital, starting with a speech this morning by Chinese President Xi Jinping. Then came a massive military and mass parade, which unveiled new weaponry and showed off China's military might. Then, the evening saw a fireworks display paired with musical and cultural performances.
  • Hong Kong protests: Chaos and violence spread across the city today amid widespread anti-government demonstrations. Protesters and riot police clashed, with fires set, tear gas fired, and an 18-year-old shot and injured by police -- the first time lethal force has been used all summer.
10:03 a.m. ET, October 1, 2019

Protest numbers are thinning in Hong Kong

The protests in Hong Kong have thinned out, although a small hardcore group of frontline demonstrators are staying on the streets.

A few hundred black-clad protesters have gathered on Nathan Road in Kowloon districts. But many other districts like Wan Chai, which had been filled with protesters in the afternoon, have been cleared out. Riot police are still spread across the city -- in some places, police and press seem to outnumber the dwindling protesters.

The intensity has also died down slightly. There are still face-offs between the protesters and police happening, as well as arrests being made, but there aren't the violent scuffles and charging attack lines that characterized demonstrations earlier today.

9:44 a.m. ET, October 1, 2019

The celebrations in Beijing have wrapped up

From CNN's Ben Westcott in Beijing

For just an hour, at the very end of October 1, Beijing seemed genuinely excited for their National Day.

Most of the day's major events had taken place under tight lock and key, behind armed police and metal barriers in the heart of the city. 

But late tonight, as the fireworks went up from Tiananmen Square, thousands of Beijing citizens from neighboring hutongs took to the streets, blocking traffic for a chance to see the bright lights. 

Elderly residents in wheelchairs were brought outside, while children sat on parents' shoulders. People waved China's national flag, and some even shouted ”Happy birthday” in English. 

“This literally is the most exciting thing I’ve experienced. The whole nation is united and watching the fireworks show,” said 21-year-old university student Chen Hanwen.

In parks, streets, and malls across the city, people's excitement all day felt obligatory -- not forced, but not very passionate either. 

Most of the real enthusiasm was in the multitude of flags hung from doors or the massive propaganda posters designed by the government.