The authorities have sent a team of soldiers and police officers to Obuasi to restore order after some 48 illegal miners who were arrested in an AngloGold Ashanti mine shaft protested at the local police station.
The miners had entered the shaft illegally to look for gold but were unable to get out after the exits were closed. They were later rescued and detained by the police.
The incident sparked anger among other illegal miners who stormed the police station to demand their release. They also claimed that some of their colleagues were still stuck in the shaft and vowed to resume their mining activities after they were freed.
The security forces arrived at the scene with armoured vehicles and fired shots to disperse the crowd. They are currently guarding the police station.
AngloGold Ashanti, which owns the mine, denied that any miners were trapped or confined in the shaft. It said that they could exit on foot through the main ramp of the mine area.
The company also said that it had notified the relevant authorities and public security services and was working closely with them.