A riot has closed down one of Foxconn Technology’s largest plants in China, according to published reports.
Riot police came into the factory to break up a fight among factory employees, and several people were hospitalized and detained by the police after the riot, the New York Times said. The riot could make a lot of people nervous since Foxconn is the assembly giant that makes many products for Apple, Hewlett-Packard and a number of other electronics giants.
The Foxconn plant in the city of Tiayuan in central China employs about 79,000 workers. Foxconn declined to say to media whether the facility made the iPhone 5, which went on sale last week. Foxconn has more than 1.1 million employees in China. Foxconn is a division of the Hon Hai Group in Taiwan. Over the past year, the company has been hit with labor abuse allegations and worker safety violations. Apple and Foxconn have worked together to improve conditions and pay. The Tiayuan site was part of a dispute last March.
Engadget said the Taiyuan facility focuses on magnesium alloy components for consumer electronics, heat conduction products, LED lighting products, and magnesium alloy automotive components. All of those products are commonly used in computers and mobile devices. One report said it made the back casing of the iPhone 5. Foxconn told Reuters that the fight involved a couple of thousand workers and may have happened in the workers’ dormitory. The Foxconn spokesman confirmed that the factory made parts for the iPhone 5.