The Straits Times
Published on Oct 27, 2012

China residents protest chemical factory expansion


BEIJING (AP) - Thousands of people in an eastern Chinese city clashed with police while protesting the proposed expansion of a chemical factory that they say would spew pollution and damage public health, townspeople said today.

The Zhenhai district government in Zhejiang province's Ningbo city said in a statement that a few people disrupted public order by staging sit-ins, unfurling banners, distributing fliers and obstructing roads. It said the proposed project, which would produce chemical such as ethylene and paraxylene, was under review.

Zhenhai police said protesters threw rocks and bricks at officers yesterday and that police dispersed illegal gatherings to restore the flow of traffic.

Residents, however, said the protests involved thousands of people and turned violent after authorities used tear gas to dispel the crowds and arrested participants.