Mass protests in Chinese city after top Communist leader axed
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Mass protests continued in south-western Chinese city of Chongqing, the base of the purged charismatic Communist party leader Bo Xilai, with the authorities maintaining that the upsurge had nothing to do with his axing.
Over 10,000 people protested in the city forcing the police to fire tear gas shells yesterday to "disperse the protesters".
Meanwhile, Chinese officials claimed the demonstrations have nothing to do with his ouster. Police said, demonstrators left last night and traffic resumed in the district.
Social order has been restored after thousands of protesters demonstrated against district merger in south western city of Chongqing for the past two days, local authorities said, state-run Xinhua reported today.
"No one died in the rally though there were small clashes between the police and protesters. Those who suffered minor injuries in the clashes were all sent to hospitals," it said.
People began to rally in several places in the Wansheng economic development zone of Qijiang district on Tuesday and the protest swelled to nearly 10,000 people yesterday, blocking expressway exits and roads and smashing and setting fires to police cars, it said.
Officials from the Chongqing Municipal Committee of the Communist Party of China (CPC) said the protest was related to the people's economic interests, and had no connection with the case of Wang Lijun, Chongqing's former police chief, or the investigation of Bo Xilai, former Party chief of Chongqing, it said.
Till recently, Bo headed the city as Mayor and its Communist Party chief, until Wang, who was the police chief of the city under him took shelter in the US Consulate after falling out with Bo. This led to a major crackdown by the central government against Bo and his support base in Chongqing.
Bo was sacked from all party positions pending an inquiry on Tuesday while his wife Gu Kailai and his orderly were arrested for the murder of British national Neil Heywood.
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