(File photo) Protesters sing as they hold weapons outside the mine in Lonmin in Marikana, Rustenburg. Photo: Reuters

Rustenburg - Protesting workers at Lonmin's eastern section platinum mine, in North West, dispersed before noon on Tuesday, a spokeswoman said.

“They gathered outside the eastern platinum hostel and then went to the Saffy shaft to speak with management. It was aimed at intimidation. It was then dispersed,” said Lonmin spokeswoman Gillian Findlay.

She said about 200 workers started protesting early in the morning in an attempt to prevent other miners from going to work.

The group marched under police escort to the shaft, Findlay said.

“There is a high police and mine security presence.”

The mine forms part of the greater Marikana mining operation situated between Rustenburg and Brits.

The area where 34 miners were shot dead on August 16, lies to the west.

Provincial police were not aware of the protests. - Sapa