Chinese officials bow to protests against factory
NINGBO, China (AP) - Thousands of protesters who marched through an eastern Chinese city today against the expansion of a petrochemical factory won a pledge from the local government that the project would be halted.
The protest, which comes at a sensitive time in China's political calendar, had swelled over the weekend and led to clashes between citizens and police. The Ningbo city government said in a statement in the evening that they and the project's investor had "resolutely" agreed not to go ahead with the expansion.
Outside the government offices where crowds of protesters remained, an official tried to read the statement on a loudspeaker but was drowned out by shouts demanding the mayor step down. On the third attempt, the crowd briefly cheered but then turned back to demanding that authorities release protesters being held inside.
Liu Li, 24, a Ningbo resident, said the crowd did not believe the government's statement.