Johannesburg - Protesters who demonstrated at Gold One's Modder East mine, near Springs, were not employed by the mine, Gold One said on Thursday.

Spokeswoman Stevi-Mae Kruger rejected news reports that some employees at the mine were on strike.

“No current employees at Gold One's Modder East mine have embarked on strike action this week,” she said in a statement.

Four protesters were shot with rubber bullets and had to be hospitalised on Monday.

The four men were part of a group of around 60 former employees of Gold One and Pamodzi Gold East Rand who blockaded the main entrance to the mine early on Monday morning.

Gold One CEO Neal Froneman said the mine was granted an interdict against protests of this nature in June, and it was still valid. The interdict allowed the police to intervene.

The police tried to persuade the protesters to leave, but used rubber bullets and teargas when they refused to disperse. Access to the mine was re-established in the early afternoon.

Police arrested 13 of the protesters, who were charged with public violence and malicious damage to property.

The 13 appeared in the Springs Magistrate's Court on Wednesday, with the case postponed till Wednesday. - Sapa