The dispute over a controversial gold and copper mine in the Khao Luang sub-district of Loei has entered a precarious phase. The situation had long been tense — a wall was built to hinder the mine’s operations, with villagers claiming they were frustrated at being taken advantage of and having their concerns overlooked.
But the latest news of violence, with villagers beaten by between 200 and 300 men carrying clubs, is particularly worrying. Those protesting against the mine also fear there will be more to come.
In today’s edition of Spectrum, a special report details how a once-peaceful town with clean freshwater and edible fruits and vegetables became a toxic site where there are cases of arsenic and cyanide poisoning.
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