Student leaders postpone talks

Leaders of a pro-democracy student group in Hong Kong have postponed talks with the government after demonstrators got into scuffles with opponents.

The group said the authorities were failing to protect protesters.

Police denied colluding with those who used violence against the protesters, and said they had arrested members of the triad criminal gangs.

Activists are protesting at plans by China to vet election candidates and have been occupying parts of the city.

Hong Kong’s leader on Thursday offered talks to defuse the situation after the protesters called for his resignation.

But scuffles broke out as people apparently angry with the disruption caused by the protests tried to dismantle tents and barricades.

The Hong Kong Federation of Students, which was invited to negotiations with the government, said in a statement it had “shelved” the talks.

A time and place for the negotiations had never been confirmed.

“The government allowed the mafia to attack peaceful Occupy participants.

“It has cut off the path to a dialogue, and should be responsible for the consequences,” it said.

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