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41 Chinese arrested in Ghana (2)

By Ling Yuhuan (Global Times)

08:35, August 28, 2012

He said there are also "a number of local people involved."

Thirty-eight Chinese workers were arrested for illegal gold mining on May 22 and were later released on bail by Ghana police, after AGA reported them, the China National Radio reported.

Ghana produced over 3 million ounces of gold in 2010, the Minerals Commission of Ghana said.

The reserve of gold has reportedly attracted more than 1 million illegal gold miners to Ghana.

"Ghana has seen an increase in illegal Chinese gold miners since 2006," Guo said.

Currently there are between 400 and 500 illegal Chinese miners in southern Ghana, news portal ghanamma.com reported.

Most of the illegal Chinese miners were not employed by any company, but were mining for their own profit and paid rent and part of their earnings to the local tribal chiefs or landlords, Guo said. "Although most of the land is owned by these chiefs, the minerals are owned by the country. The chiefs don't have the rights to mine."

However, many villagers who believe their rights are not being protected are vehemently opposed to illegal mining by foreigners.

A group of Chinese gold miners opened fire to disperse local villagers near Asante Bekwai on July 19, Guo said. There were no casualties but nine Chinese were summoned to assist police investigations, reports said.
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