UK & World News
Chinese Pollution Protests Enter Third Day
Protests have continued for a third day in the Chinese city of Ningbo against pollution from an oil refinery and petro-chemical plant.
It followed clashes with police on Saturday outside the city's local government headquarters and in the central Tianyi Square.
The plant produces 500,000 tonnes of paraxylene, or PX, which can damage the central nervous system, liver and kidneys. Chronic exposure can result in death.
On Friday officials said crowds attacked police and overturned cars.
The demonstrations in Ningbo - a city of 7.6 million near Shanghai - are the latest in a string of protests over environmental pollution.
Such incidents illustrate the social tensions confronting the central government ahead of its once-a-decade leadership transition.
Protests over workers' rights and other issues are growing in strength in China - but are still met with a strong hand and usually cracked down on by the government.
But it is particularly nervous at the moment ahead of the Communist Party Congress on November 8 which will start the power transition leading to the announcement of Xi Jinping as the country's next President.
Officials are quick to quash any criticism of some of the key issues which confront the new crop of leaders. Those issues also include the economy and corruption.
In an unusual move lawyers for Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao's family have denied reports over allegations over hidden wealth.
It follows a report by the New York Times which claimed that relatives of the Premier had controlled assets worth at least $2.7bn (£1.7bn).
The Chinese foreign ministry said the story "blackened China's name and had ulterior motives".
Authorities have now blocked access to the NYT's website in China.
It is unusual for the family of a senior Chinese leader to comment publicly on foreign media reports about them.
When Bloomberg ran an article earlier this year on the wealth of relatives of Xi Jinping there was no public response from the family.
The statement, issued by lawyers from two Chinese firms late on Saturday night said they had been "entrusted by the family members of Wen Jiaobo".
It said: "The so-called hidden riches of Wen Jiabao's family members in the New York Times' report does not exist.
"Some of Wen Jiabao's family members have not engaged in business activities. Some were engaged in business activities, but they did not carry out any illegal business activity. They do not hold shares of any companies."
It said that Wen's mother had never had any income or property beyond her salary and pension.
The statement added: "Wen Jiabao has never played any role in the business activities of his family members, still less has he allowed his family members' business activities to have any influence on his formulation and execution of policies."