Dar es Salaam - Tanzanian police have made sweeping arrests
after a day of protests in which one person was killed in a south-eastern town
over a gas pipeline project, the government said on Thursday.
"Several houses and a lot of property were badly
damaged," home affairs minister Emmanuel Nchimbi told parliament on Thursday,
a day after the riots in the coastal town of Mtwara, close to the border with
Police, who on Wednesday fired tear gas to break up the
riots, had arrested more than 90 people and the town is "now calm and
under control", Nchimbi said, adding that one person had died.
The area is rich in natural gas, but many locals have
reportedly opposed the planned construction of a pipeline fearing they would
not benefit from the resource, a move condemned by President Jakaya Kikwete.
"Natural resources, regardless of the region where they
are found, are the property of all Tanzanians," Kikwete said in a
television broadcast late Wednesday, in which he appeared visibly angry.
Riots began after parliamentary debates discussing the
One protestor was killed in the riots, Nchimbi said, adding
that demonstrators torched several buildings including the offices of local
government offices, the ruling party, the house of the journalist working for
the state broadcaster and a court house.