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Police in South Africa have opened fire during clashes with striking workers at the Marikana platinum mine, leaving at least seven people dead, witnesses say.
South African media reports put the death toll at 12 or even higher, reports the BBC.
Police opened fire after miners carrying machetes defied an ultimatum to disarm, reports from the scene say.
The mine, owned by Lonmin, has been at the centre of a violent industrial dispute exacerbated by inter-union tensions.
Ten people had previously died as a result of clashes since the strike began last Friday.
The striking miners had gathered on a rocky hill near Marikana, the third-largest platinum mine in the world.
Some union leaders and police had tried in vain to disperse the crowd, some of whom said they were prepared to die on the hill.
During the clashes, missiles - thought to be either petrol bombs or grenades - were thrown at police, who responded by opening fire, eyewitnesses said.
Some reports said a group of miners had approached police lines before the shooting began.
One witness, Molaole Montsho, of the South African news agency Sapa, told the BBC police had first used teargas in an attempt to disperse the miners.
"The police threatened with them water from the water cannon, fired tear gas and stun grenades. And then in the commotion - we were about 800m (2,600ft) from the scene - we heard gunshots that lasted for about two minutes," he said.