Video: Police use tear gas on protesters

Protesters block a highway demanding the removal of a coal-fired plant from Haimen in south China's Guangdong province  on December 20, 2011.

Story highlights

  • Tear gas was used to disperse a large crowd of people, video shows
  • Some protesters have been beaten this week, according to witnesses
  • The protesters are concerned about pollution caused by the plant's emissions
Demonstrators faced tear gas and a heavy police presence as they gathered for a third straight day to protest a coal power plant in southern China.
Video from CNN affiliate i-CABLE News showed the massing protesters and confrontations with police in Haimen Thursday.
Police checkpoints dotted intersections in the city and students said police questioned people traveling in groups in an attempt to get them to disperse.
The protests began Tuesday morning when a group of residents went to the local government with a petition asking for the removal of the power plant and to stop the construction of a second.
When they did not get a response, they gathered on a street outside the government building. Some people were beaten.
Protests have been on the rise in China, where public displays of dissatisfaction are typically rare. The protests are driven by socioeconomic issues like income inequality, corruption, pollution and inflation, according to the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission.