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Guinea Investigating After 5 Killed Near Vale’s Zogota Site

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Aug. 7 (Bloomberg) -- Five people were killed and three others wounded in Guinea on Aug. 3 when gunmen attacked the village of Zogota, where Vale SA is developing an iron-ore mine, the Guinean Human Rights Organization said.

Guinean President Alpha Conde “deeply regrets the unfortunate events” and said an investigation has been started, according to an e-mailed statement, which didn’t give details on the incident.

A government delegation was sent to the Brazilian embassy to reaffirm relations between the countries, according to the presidency’s statement.

Vale’s press office in Rio de Janeiro declined to immediately comment when contacted today. Vale delayed the start of its $1.26 billion Zogota project, in the country’s south, to the second half of 2012, the company said on July 25 during an earnings presentation.

The project, which will have a total estimated iron-ore capacity of 15 million metric tons per year, was previously expected to start production in the second quarter of 2012. No reason was given for the delay.

Residents of Zogota protested against the development of the project earlier in the week, according to the Guinean human-rights group.

To contact the reporters on this story: Ougna Camara in Conakry at ocamara@bloomberg.net; Juan Pablo Spinetto in Rio de Janeiro at jspinetto@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Emily Bowers at ebowers1@bloomberg.net

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