One dead, dozens injured in Bangladesh factory clash
Mon May 21, 2007 5:11AM EDT

DHAKA (Reuters) - Clashes between police and rioting garment workers demanding payment of wages left one person dead and about 60 people injured in Bangladesh.

The clashes occurred at a garment factory at Tongi, 23 km (14 miles) north of the capital Dhaka and the scene remained tense on Monday.

"We have brought in extra forces to avert more violence when the factories reopened," a police officer said. Workers and police were among those injured in Sunday's violence.

The dead female worker, from the Fortuna Garments factory, was believed to have been shot by police on Sunday.
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Police had opened fire on the factory workers, who damaged about 50 vehicles on a highway to press for payment of wages in arrears, police and workers said.

Leaders of Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association visited the factory.

"We handed over 100,000 taka ($1,449) from our fund to the deceased's family and also assured them to investigate the incident," Anwar-Ul-Alam Chowdhury, president of the association told Reuters on Monday.

Ready-made garments are Bangladesh's main export, which accounted for more than 75 percent of total export earnings.

There are more than 4,000 garment factories employing 2.2 million workers, of which more than 80 percent are women. But the factories are often plagued by unrest, mostly over pay disputes. ... 0820070521