MANAGUA, Oct 6 (Reuters) - A policeman died and 23 other officers were injured in clashes with protesters on Tuesday, the Nicaraguan police said, part of an ongoing labor dispute that has shut down operations at a Nicaraguan gold mine owned by Canada’s B2Gold Corp.
Eight civilians were also injured, said the country’s director general of police, Aminta Granera.
The El Limon mine, located about 89 miles (143 km) from the capital, has been closed for over a week because of an illegal blockade, a B2Gold Corp spokeswoman said on Monday, and the shutdown has cost the company over $1 million.
Granera said that police officers were protecting a company bus, which was transporting workers from the El Limon mine to another mine, when protesters attacked them with sticks, rocks, mortars, and molotov cocktails.
The policeman passed away after being taken to the hospital, Granera said.
She also said that the El Limon police station, a police vehicle, a company bus and three company vehicles were destroyed in the attack.
B2Gold issued a statement in Nicaragua expressing its condolences to the victim’s family and friends, and calling for calm and order in the community. (Reporting by Ivan Castro; Writing by Joanna Zuckerman Bernstein; Editing by Lisa Shumaker)