Nov. 29 - Riot police fire water cannon and tear gas to break up a three-month protest against a vast copper mining project. Sarah Charlton reports.
Riot police gather at a mine in Myanmar, ready to break up a three-month-old protest. Buddhist monks are among demonstrators rallying here against the expansion of the copper mine, run by Myanmar's military and a Chinese company. But authorities warned the protesters to clear the site. In the early hours of Thursday (November 29) morning, riot police move in. Witnesses said water cannon and tear gas were used to disperse the protesters. Footage and images from the Democratic Voice of Burma show a fire in the protest camp and monks being treated for injuries. Witnesses said at least ten monks were wounded in the clashes - two of them critically. Pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi went ahead with a visit to the area later on Thursday, where she planned to speak to the protesters. The mine has become a test of Myanmar's commitment to reform, as demonstrators probe new freedoms such as a relaxation of protest laws.