The acting chief executive yesterday called on pro-democracy protesters to clear sites they have occupied for more than six weeks, warning that those who remained could face arrest.
"To those who are unlawfully occupying the roads, we call for you to leave the areas quickly and peacefully," said Carrie Lam, who is acting leader while Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying attends the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (Apec) summit in Beijing.
"Following two-hour talks on October 21, the students have toughened their stance, raising again their demands … I think there is no room for dialogue for now," Lam added.
There has been speculation that police did not want to try to clear the sites while the Apec summit was ongoing. But they may now step up efforts.
US President Barack Obama was due to meet President Xi Jinping today. US officials have said freedom of speech and assembly are universal values, including in Hong Kong.
Lam spoke a day after a court ruled that police could arrest protesters who defy authorities trying to clear sites. Lam said police would make arrests as needed. But demonstrators said they were ready to react quickly to any moves to clear the sites.
Almost nine out of 10 protesters said they were ready to stay on the streets for more than a year, according to an informal Reuters survey last month.