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Tibetan Reports: 4 Tibetans Killed, Many Injured in Mine Protest

The official Xinhua News Agency reported Monday that a 47-year-old Tibetan named Babo died after being hit "by a stray bullet when police fired warning shots with an anti-riot shotgun."

Tibetan groups living outside China say at least four Tibetans were killed when Chinese police opened fire on protesters at a gold mine in southwestern Sichuan province.

Reports quoting Tibetan sources say the shooting took place August 17 in Palyul county, close to Sichuan province's border with Tibet. They say many other people were injured.

Reports say Tibetans had been demonstrating for several days against the expansion of a gold mine they say is causing environmental damage.

A group of Tibetans reportedly went to protest outside government offices, claiming the heavy machinery and traffic destroys local habitat.

County officials allegedly resorted to force after they failed to peacefully disperse the protesters.

Tibetans at home and those living in exile accuse the Chinese government of imposing industrial development and construction in Tibetan-populated areas, against the will of the local population.

Some information for this report was provided by AP, AFP and Tibetcustom.