Protesters in Hong Kong added cement to their barricades on Monday of this week to stop pro-government thugs from dispersing them.
Hong Kong’s chief executive Leung Chun-ying said the chances of having an influence were “almost zero”.
Police started to clear some barricades on Monday morning to ease traffic flow, they claimed.
They said they were not challenging the protest.
But within hours several hundred men, many in masks, had attacked protesters and removed far more barricades.