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Chinese Villagers Mob Police in Environmental Spat: Xinhua

BEIJING (Reuters) - Around 100 villagers attacked a police station in southwestern China on Friday as part of an environmental protest, state media said in a rare report about what are increasingly common demonstrations.

Two government workers and one local resident were injured in the clash in Baha village in Yunnan province at around midday, Xinhua said, citing local authorities. The situation was brought under control soon afterwards, it added.

Xinhua did not give further details about Friday's incident but said around 100 Baha villagers had attacked the nearby Jiangnan Iron and Alloy factory on Monday and three of them had been summoned to the police station on Friday morning for damaging factory property.

There are tens of thousands of unreported protests in China each year, a rising number of which are over environmental disputes in a country where rapid economic growth has taken its toll on the air, water and land.

There were two large protests in the Yunnan city of Kunming last June when residents resisted plans for a local factory to produce paraxylene, a chemical used in making fabrics and plastic bottles.

(Reporting by Koh Gui Qing; Editing by Robin Pomeroy)

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