16 Chinese nationals engaging in illegal mining have been arrested by the inter-ministerial taskforce in the Ashanti Region.
The task force during the operation at the Kobro forest reserve found 14 pump action assault rifle guns, a number of cartridges and also found one rare military M16 assault rifle.
Joy News' Erastus Asare Donkor who followed the issue reported that head of security at the site, one Ex-WO Addo Boateng said they had permission to mine and also the site belonged to one Donald Ntua.
He said they had the permit from the National mineral commission to mine even though there is currently a ban on mining.
Erasmus further reported that several trees have been fell and the ecosystem of the area was severely damaged.
Reports also indicate that they have over thirty excavators at the site.
The Chinese nationals have currently been handed over to the Obuasi Police.
Following the widespread devastation of water resources and forest reserves as a result of the activities of illegal mining, government, in January 2017 placed a ban on small scale mining for a period of six months.
Government said they would lift the ban before the year ends.
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