When Hong Kong police tear gassed pro-democracy protesters on Sept. 28, they unwittingly triggered the Occupy Central civil disobedience movement, which has come to be known as the Umbrella Movement because that’s all the students had to protect themselves.
Now the heart of the city is occupied by hundreds of demonstrators who’ve moved in with colorful tents, study centers, protest art, all manner of umbrellas, and the will to remain til a resolution is reached.
On the other side, Chief Executive C.Y. Leung has refused to step down, and offers of talks with the protest leaders have not been followed by any sign of political reform.
With the students refusing to back down, and the administration unwilling to violently remove them, a polite stand-off has been reached.
These photos show the transformation of Asia’s financial capital into a creative mass protest site, and what may be its new normal.