Turkish anti-government protests about mine disaster

This video is called Turkey Mine Explosion: 200 Dead, 200 Trapped.

Translated from NOS TV in the Netherlands:

Unrest in Turkish cities about mine disaster

Wednesday, May 14th, 2014, 17:50 (Update: 14-05-14, 18:01)

Demonstrations in Ankara after the mine disaster

In Turkey in different cities protests are underway. The protesters are angry with the government for the mining disaster in Soma where at least 238 people were killed in an explosion. They blame the government which has not done enough for safety in the mines.

About 800 students in the Turkish capital Ankara tried to go to the Department of Energy to express concern about the mine disaster. Police have driven them away with tear gas and water cannons.

This video is called Turkey: Police unleash water cannons at crowd protesting mining disaster.

“Assassin ”

In Istanbul, hundreds of protesters have gathered in front of the headquarters of the owner of the mine, Soma Holding. Some had their faces painted black to show their solidarity with the miners. They accuse the mine owner of poor compliance with safety regulations.

In Soma itself, where the disaster took place, there were also protests. People threw stones and Prime Minister Erdogan was called a “murderer and thief.” People clashed with riot police who fired tear gas and water cannons to repel them.

Black clothes

Trade unions and other organizations have also called for protests. They want to have tomorrow morning a three-minute silence in memory of the victims. The unions have called on their members to wear black clothes tomorrow.

At least 245 miners have died, the government says.

By Thomas Gaist:

Miners blamed the disaster on the absence of safety procedures and the drive for profit at the massive mine. It has reserves of over 125 million tons and yields some 2 million tons annually, making it one of the largest lignite sources on the planet.

One miner at Soma, Oktay Berrin, told AFP: “There is no security in this mine. The unions are just puppets and our management only cares about money.”

A member of parliament from the region, Özgür Özel of the Kemalist opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP), said that 10 safety inspections had discovered 66 safety infractions at the Soma mine in recent years. However, no fines were issued.

Turkey mine disaster: grief turns to rage as hopes of finding survivors fade. PM Recep Tayyip Erdoğan is met by shouts of ‘murderer’ and ‘thief’ on visit to mine, whose owners are linked to ruling party: here.

Violence erupts in Turkish capital after coal mine disaster kills hundreds – and PM claims ‘accidents like these happen all the time’: here.

Turkish trade union KESK calls for protest strike on Thursday: here.

USA: Two West Virginia miners were killed Monday night in a coal roof and wall collapse at a mine owned by Patriot Coal. The mine was cited for a pattern of safety violations and unreported injuries last year and was one of three mines in the country that federal safety authorities said they would put under greater scrutiny: here.

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