Two-Day Protests Halt Sichuan Copper Project over Environmental Concerns

A city in southwest China has temporarily stopped work at a Sichuan copper alloy project and said that it will punish organizers of a two-day protest if they do not give themselves up. The protests by tens of thousands of residents of Shifang had turned violent.

New York, July 4 (SharewellNeswire.com) -  In the latest case of unrest due to environmental concerns in China, a city in southwest China has temporarily stopped work at a Sichuan copper alloy project and said that it will punish organizers of a two-day protest if they do not give themselves up.

Chinese leaders are caught up between the need to maintain stability and balance growth with rising public indignation over environmental issues.

On Monday, tens of thousands of residents of Shifang in Sichuan province had stormed the city government headquarters turning violent and smashing police cars and clashing with anti-riot police. Police had to use tear gas to disperse the crowds with the result that at least 13 people were injured. It was reported that one high school student had died, although officials denied that report.
 
The Shifang government adopted a tough stand on Tuesday and called on locals who were involved in inciting protestors in any way to stop their illegal activities immediately. It said that those who surrender within three days will be dealt with leniently but the rest would face harsher treatment.
 
The Shifang government has decided to temporarily suspend the building of a molybdenum-copper alloy factory by Shanghai-listed Sichuan Hongda. It added that opinions and suggestions of the general public on the project would be taken into consideration.

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