China has accused protesters who vandalised Hong Kong’s parliament on Monday of “serious illegal actions” that “trample on the rule of law”.
A group of activists occupied the Legislative Council (LegCo) building for several hours after breaking away from a peaceful protest.
Hundreds of police used tear gas to clear the building.
Beijing urged the city to investigate what it called the “criminal responsibility of violent offenders”.
Hong Kong is part of China but is run under a “one country, two systems” arrangement that guarantees it a level of autonomy, and rights not seen on the mainland.
Monday’s disorder followed weeks of protests over a controversial extradition law, which critics have said could be used to send political dissidents from Hong Kong to mainland China.
The Chinese government response followed similar remarks by Hong Kong’s leader Carrie Lam, who condemned what she called the “extreme use of violence” by the protesters at a pre-dawn press conference on Tuesday.
Flanked by Police Commissioner Lo Wai-chung, she said the actions of those who broke into LegCo were “something that we should seriously condemn, because nothing is more important than the rule of law in Hong Kong”.
She said: “This is something we should seriously condemn because nothing is more important than the rule of law in Hong Kong.”
Lo added: “Protesters’ violent acts have far exceeded the bottom line of peaceful expressions of demands.”
The government suspended the extradition bill last month and it is now unlikely to pass, but the protesters want it scrapped completely and are calling on Ms Lam to stand down.