Local July 16, 2012 | 1:45 pm

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Protests erupt near one of the world’s most polluted sites

Santo Domingo.- Relatives and friends of people affected by lead poisoning in the town of Haina on Monday began to protest to demand that the Environment Ministry halt the recycling of batteries.

The protesters, interviewed by elcaribe.com.do, said dozens of children and the aged suffer respiratory ailments and some with permanent damage to their immune system, as a result of the recycling of batteries.

They especially cited the company Metalosa, which they affirm has caused the most damage in the area, operating for over 20 years in the slum Ciudad de Dios (City of God).

According to the Blacksmith Institute, the lead recycling turned the place into one of the world’s 10 most polluted sites, close behind Chernobyl.

They said the company Metalosa, associated with Meteoro batteries, dumped its lead waste on site.

The inhabitants of Barsequillo, Los Bajos de Haina, Piedra Blanca, and other sectors picketed outside the offices of Metalosa, chanting and carrying banners and candles, to call the attention of the Environment authorities.

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