An organizer of Hong Kong’s peaceful pro-democracy civil disobedience movement urged thousands of people to keep up protests across the city until the government responds to their demands.

Enormous crowds of demonstrators continued to block key roads Monday afternoon while other protesters said they planned to join the action when the workday was over.

Chan Kin-man, one of Occupy Central’s leaders, said residents of Hong Kong should continue protesting as long as there was no risk of escalated force from the government. He pointed out that Hong Kong’s chief executive, Leung Chun-ying, said police would not fire on demonstrators or summon help from the People’s Liberation Army. The opposition leader did tell the South China Morning Post however that organizers are “worried that there are people infiltrating to cause trouble.”

The Guardian reported Monday:

Police attempts to use teargas to clear huge protests from Admiralty and Central in downtown Hong Kong late on Sunday backfired, instead spurring more people to take to the streets, with numbers peaking in the tens of thousands. New protests sprang up in Causeway Bay and Mongkok, in Kowloon.

“What we have seen is spontaneous – without leadership, without prior organisation, of its own volition … a people’s movement. We simply want basic dignity. We simply want to be respected,” said lawmaker Alan Leong of the Civic party.

Parts of the financial hub, generally known for its orderliness, were paralysed by the protesters on Monday. Banks, schools and some businesses were closed. But in Central, businesses operated as usual and in Causeway Bay, tourists and shoppers made their way around the demonstrations.

The government announced Monday morning that riot police had been removed from the streets as protesters had “mostly calmed down.”

— Posted by Alexander Reed Kelly

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