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Several arrest warrants after a mine accident with more than 50 dead

NAfter the serious accident with more than 50 dead in a coal mine in Russia, the judicial authorities obtained several arrest warrants against those responsible for security. The director of the “Listwjaschnaja” coal mine in western Siberia, his deputy and the head of the shaft section concerned, as well as two senior employees of the state supervisory authority, were arrested on Saturday. This was announced by a court and the public prosecutor in Kemerovo. The men are accused of being responsible for safety violations and the deaths of miners and rescue workers.

A methane gas explosion broke out in the mine in Belovo on Thursday. 51 people died, including five rescue workers who had gone in search of the miners.

In the meantime, the emergency services resumed the work to rescue the dead, which had been temporarily suspended due to the risk of explosion. The governor of Kemerovo, Sergei Ziwiljow, announced on Saturday in the news channel Telegram. “We have to get everyone out,” he said. The civil protection ministry announced in the evening that five bodies had been recovered and brought to the surface. The search for dozens more dead continued.

It is the worst mining accident in Russia for more than ten years. More than 40 people were injured. They are cared for in hospitals. According to the Ministry of Civil Protection, 239 workers were rescued from the shaft. The mine is located around 3000 kilometers east of the capital Moscow.

According to investigators, methane had already accumulated in the air in the shaft of the famous Kuznetsk coal basin (Kuzbass) since mid-June. This created an explosive mixture, it was said. The highly flammable mine gas methane is released during work in the mining industry and, if there is poor ventilation, accumulates in the shafts and underground routes. The work in the Russian coal mines, which also supply Germany, is considered to be life-threatening.

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