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Hong Kong protests continue with a sit in on site of previous mob attack on protesters

Protesters numbering hundreds gathered at a  metro station for a silent sit-in. The location was the site of a mob attack against protesters.

Hong Kong-based Bank of East Asia Ltd (BEA) posted a 75% slump in first-half net profit after it wrote down loans in China because of a downturn in commercial property markets outside China’s top cities.

It also warned that social unrest in Hong Kong and a trade dispute between China and the United States could affect the economies of China and the former British colony.

“The tense atmosphere (in Hong Kong) is likely to weigh on consumer and business confidence, and on inbound tourism, if there is no resolution soon,” it said in a statement.

Some Hong Kong companies have been dragged into controversy after 11 weeks of sometimes violent clashes between police and pro-democracy protesters, angered by a perceived erosion of freedoms.

Pilots and cabin crew at Cathay Pacific Airways described a “white terror” of political denunciations, sackings and phone searches by Chinese aviation officials.

BEA and its rivals have closed branches in the vicinity of protests which are already exacting a toll on Hong Kong’s economy and tourism – the Asian financial hub is on the verge of its first recession in a decade.

Hundreds of protesters, many masked, some with helmets, gathered peacefully at the suburban Yuen Long rail station, one of a series of running demonstrations over 11 weeks that have sometimes turned violent, including the storming of the legislature and havoc at the airport.

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