Friday 23 December 2011

Civil unrest in China

Violent Riots In Southern China Force Authorities To Halt Construction On Power Plant

22 December, 2011

Proposals for a power plant in the southern Chinese town of Haimen have been put on hold after demonstrations turned violent on Thursday, according to Sui-Lee Wee at Reuters. 

Baton-wielding riot police used tear gas to disband protestors on motorbikes who gathered near a blocked off a highway entrance to Haimen. 

Unrest in the province of Guangdong—China's manufacturing center—began on Tuesday when thousands of residents gathered to demand a coal-fired plant be moved, prompted by concerns of pollution and resulting health issues. 

Villagers showed their anger by throwing rocks, bricks, and water bottles at the police, reports the AP.

The outbursts come fresh off the heels of local uprisings in the village of Wukan, a town just 80 miles east of Haimen, over land disputes. 

Riots over pollution are not uncommon in China, especially as citizens develop a growing awareness of rights.

Back in September, massive protests outside a solar factory in eastern China forced authorities to shut down the plant, which had been accused of contaminating a nearby river. Prior to that, 12,000 demonstrators stormed the streets to protest a chemical plant in Dalian in northeast China. 

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