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China plant stormed over lead poisoning of children

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Emma Harrison
Monday, August 17, 2009

Chinese protesters on Monday broke into a smelting works they blame for the lead poisoning of hundreds of children, smashing trucks and tearing down fences, state news agency Xinhua said.

More than 600 children living near the Dongling metal smelter, in northwest Shaanxi province, have dangerous amounts of the heavy metal in their blood and 154 are so sick they have been admitted to hospital, the report added.

Protests against pollution are increasingly common in China, although the police normally try and nip them in the bud before they become violent. In other cases, officials show up and mollify residents with promises of financial or other aid.

Monday’s protests began after news spread around villagers that the poisoning had sparked a suicide attempt by one 19-year-old student, Xinhua reported.

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This article was posted: Monday, August 17, 2009 at 3:36 am

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