23 miners die in Balochistan twin coal mine collapse

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The blast in the Marwar coalfields in Baluchistan province was caused by a build-up of methane gas inside the mine, director of disaster management Attaullah Khan said.

Seven more were killed in a landslide at another mine nearby. "We have recovered all the 16 bodies from the rubble caused by the collapse in the coal mine", Atique said.

Three hours later, a similar explosion ripped through a mine about 25 kilometres (16 miles) away, killing seven people and wounding two others.

Six people were rescued and taken to a hospital for treatment, and rescuers were still looking Saturday night for one person believed trapped in the mine, officials said. The rescue operation resumed this morning and bodies of remaining five labourers were recovered. The first accident occurred in Marwaarh due to a gas explosion on Saturday.

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Safety measures are basic and laborers are often drawn from other parts of Pakistan, according to Reuters.

Meanwhile, activists of the Pakistan Central Mines Labour Federation (PMCLF) staged a demonstration outside Quetta Press Club on Sunday to protest against the killing of 23 miners in the two mine incidents.

RISING number of deaths in mining accidents in Balochistan highlights the low level of safety in coal mines, many of which are unregistered and out of bound to officials of the Inspectorate of Mines.

In the other incident, at least nine miners were trapped in a coal mine Pakistan Mineral Development Corporation (PMDC) in the Sur-range field near Quetta, an official said.

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