China protesters clash with police in Huzhou

(AFP) – BEIJING — Thousands of people have clashed with police and smashed cars in eastern China after protests over taxes turned violent, a rights group said Thursday, while authorities put the number in the hundreds.

Several police were hurt in the riots, which began as a protest by business owners over taxes in the eastern Chinese city of Huzhou in Zhejiang province, according to an official statement posted on a local government website.

Authorities said 600 people were involved in Wednesday’s protests, but local witnesses, bloggers and a Hong Kong rights group put the number of protestors in the thousands and said there were large numbers of police on the streets.

“At least 100 cars have been smashed, including 10 police cars, and one armoured police car has been burned,” the Hong Kong-based Information Centre for Human Rights and Democracy said in a statement. Continue reading