HONG KONG, Oct 10 (Reuters) - China's mainland army and police are not part of Hong Kong police operations, the city's government said on Thursday, responding to rumours the People's Liberation Army (PLA) and mainland police were involved in trying to quell pro-democracy unrest.
"In response to rumours on the internet saying that there were members of the People's Liberation Army or mainland law enforcement agencies joining the law enforcement operations of the Hong Kong Police Force, the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Government today (Oct. 10) seriously clarified that the rumours are false and groundless," the government said in statement.
Hong Kong has seen four months of often violent and sometimes massive pro-democracy protests, sparked by a now-withdrawn China extradition bill.
The unrest is the city's worst political crisis since 1997 when Britain handed Hong Kong back to China and poses the biggest popular challenge to Chinese President Xi Jinping since he came to power in 2012.
(Reporting by Michael Perry; Editing by Alison Williams)