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Explosion Rocks China Paraxylene Chemical Plant

An explosion has ripped through a chemical plant in south-eastern China’s Fujian province, sparking a major fire, BBC reports.

The blast occurred on Monday evening at the plant in Zhangzhou. Six people were taken to hospital, say officials.

State news agency Xinhua said 177 fire engines and more than 800 firefighters were sent to the blaze, which is now under control.

The plant produces the chemical paraxylene (PX), in a process many in China feel creates harmful pollution.

PX is a flammable chemical used in polyester and plastics manufacturing.

Construction of PX plants has sparked protests, including violent demonstrations last year in Guangdong province.

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