Disputes between workers and security staff in Foxconn's Chengdu factory turned into a thousand-people riot on Monday evening, according to a Ming Pao report.
The Hong Kong-based newspaper said that workers felt that they were underpaid by the company and treated poorly by its security staff. Foxconn currently pays workers approximately $1.50 per hour; some work 76 hours per week, 11 days at a time.
The company supplies Apple, Samsung, Sony and other major global electronics manufacturers.
Thousands of workers in the southwest dormitory of the factory in central China went haywire. Angry workers fought with security staff and dorm administrators indicated they were investigating incidents of theft. The workers succeeded in beating back security, driving them from the building, as others joined in by chanting, throwing empty beer bottles off the building's roof, sabotaging dorm equipment and igniting firecrackers.
More than a hundred riot police were called to the scene; several dozens of workers were placed under arrest by 11 p.m. The government also called in private security forces to help "stabilize the situation," according to a local security company.
"We went upstairs with the policemen and arrested those mobs, it was exciting," a member of Foxconn's security staff said from his Weibo account. (Weibo is a popular microblogging service in China that is similar to Twitter.)
The Chengdu Municipal Police Authority said from its official Weibo account that four Foxconn workers were detained overnight for fighting with some restaurant owners. No one was hurt in that incident.