Some 1.7 million take part in 11th week of Hong Kong protests

Hong Kong activists defy police orders

Last Updated Aug 18, 2019 6:37 PM EDT

Hong Kong's pro-democracy movement took to the streets again Sunday for a massive and peaceful march. An estimated 1.7 million people — a quarter of the territory's population — took part.

Defying a police ban and bad weather, Hong Kongers marched in peace, fueled by anger. Overflowing Victoria Park — the city's historic site for people power protests — they spilled into the streets turning main roads into a sea of umbrellas.

Even with the rain — torrential at times — it's not stopping all of these protesters from rallying. They're angry and frustrated and committed to getting their voices heard by the government. 

What started out June 9 as a demand for the government to revoke a hated extradition bill has exploded into calls for greater democratic reform.

Hong Kong protests
Anti-extradition bill protesters march to demand democracy and political reforms, in Hong Kong, China, on Sun., Aug. 18, 2019. Reuters

The resignation of Hong Kong's chief executive Carrie Lam and a probe into police brutality.

In the past week, they've been accused of excessive force — firing tear gas into a crowded subway station.

And a protester could lose her eye after police allegedly shot a bean bag at her face — which they deny.

Hong Kong Protests
Protesters react to teargas as they confront riot police officers in Hong Kong on Sunday, July 21, 2019. AP

Protesters have been accused of chaos too: Crippling the world's eighth busiest airport over two days with mass sit-ins and detaining two Chinese citizens who they thought were spies.

Sunday's march was a chance to step back from the violence.

"I believe peace is the best way," one protester told CBS News. "I would prefer peace but peaceful protests are not doing any good."

But rising violence has come with rising fear that China could deploy its military to quash these protests.