Including a woman, Bangladeshi police opened fire on a group of protesters Monday, killing at least four, according to local news reports. Thousands of people were charged with assault and vandalism in connection with the demonstration against Chinese-financed coal plants on the country’s southeast coast.
“We demand an immediate, full and independent inquiry into yesterday’s events to hold those responsible to account for the unnecessary murder of at least four people,” two Bangladeshi groups, National Committee for Saving the Sundarbans and Bangladesh Poribesh Andolon, said in an emailed statement.
According to the groups, 15,000 people were protesting land grabs by the plants’ developer. Police officials said that one police officer was shot in the head and another 10 were injured, but villagers said the protest was peaceful.
“More than six thousand farmers are dependent on this fertile land for agriculture and salt production,” Sanjay Vashist, director of Climate Action Network South Asia, said in an emailed statement. “These farmers traveled to Gandamara to save their livelihoods and some paid for it with their lives.”