Protesters return to HK streets for 2nd night

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HONG KONG (AP) — Hong Kong police arrested 37 people overnight Thursday as pro-democracy protesters returned to the city's streets for a second night demanding open nominations for the semi-autonomous city's chief executive, according to police.

The police said in a statement that protesters blocked five roads overnight in the Mong Kok neighborhood and disobeyed police orders to clear out. The age of the arrested protesters ranged from 13 to 76.

Police arrested 12 protesters in the same neighborhood overnight Wednesday, also after they had blocked roads.

The Facebook page of a pro-democracy activist group called Hong Kong Shield said protesters walked by the three protest sites over the two nights, singing political-themed songs and holding the umbrellas that have become a symbol of the city's democracy movement. Some in the crowd wore red Santa Claus hats and chanted "I want true democracy" in Cantonese.

The group is led in part by well-known Hong Kong singer Denise Ho, who was arrested this month during the police clearance of the main Admiralty protest site.

The police statement said police "respect the public's freedoms of expression, speech and assembly" but warned that protesters "should refrain from conducting public meetings and processions by way of the so-called 'mobile occupation.'"

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