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Kyrgyzstan halts Zhong Ji Mining's Solton-Sary gold mine after violent clashes

The government of Kyrgyzstan suspended operations at Chinese miner Zhong Ji Mining's Solton-Sary gold mine in Naryn region for one month after violent protests over the site's alleged toxic spillage injured 20 people, Reuters reported Aug. 7, citing the Kyrgyz interior ministry.

The suspension was based on findings by the state environmental and technical security inspectorate, without giving details, the report said.

According to the newswire, about 300 local community members gathered outside the mine to demand work stoppage after blaming poisonous substances from the site for the death of livestock grazing near it.

The claim was disputed by local veterinary officials, who said the deaths were caused by parasitic diseases and lack of vaccinations. No toxic material was found from the mine, the report said.

One villager and 19 workers were brought to the hospital following the clash. The Chinese embassy in Kyrgyzstan called for an investigation and punishment of the perpetrators.