Mining disasters in Turkey and the USA

This video says about itself:

Mounting anger: Turkey protesters hit the streets after mine tragedy

15 May 2014

Riot police use water cannons to quell thousands of protesters in Izmir, the nearest large city to Soma, after Turkish unions called a one-day national strike to protest over the mine tragedy.

At least 282 people have been confirmed dead, mostly from carbon monoxide poisoning, and hopes are fading of pulling out any more alive of around 120 people still thought to be inside.

Many protesters are furious at what they see as a sharp decline in working conditions since the formerly state-run mines, including the one in Soma, were privatised.

Several thousand people meanwhile staged a sit-down protest in front of police water canons in Istanbul. Many held banners with slogans reading, “it is not an accident, it is not fate, it is murder” and “our hearts are burning in Soma”.

Around 1,000 people marched on the labour ministry in Ankara. Some wore miners’ helmets, waving banners showing the image of Che Guevara and chanting, “AKP murders” as police looked on.

AKP is the party of Prime Minister Erdogan.

Anger is growing in Turkey with the Erdogan government, as mass funerals commenced for victims of the mining disaster in the mining town of Soma. The accident, which is referred to by many as “murder” or “massacre”, has revealed the dirty secret behind the internationally acclaimed economic growth in Turkey: the ruthless exploitation of the working class. In Soma there is virtually no hope left of finding surviving miners. The official number of deaths remains at 282, but could go up to 400: here.

The horrific mine explosion in Turkey, with a death toll of nearly 300 and rising, is the worst mining disaster in the history of the country. The devastation wrought on family members and friends was entirely preventable. It was not an unexplainable “accident” but the inevitable result of privatization, government neglect and the capitalist profit system, which sacrifices the lives and limbs of millions of industrial workers around the world every year: here.

Turkey: Protests, strikes over Soma mine disaster continue across Turkey: here.

By Clement Daly in the USA:

West Virginia mine had appalling safety record

16 May 2014

While the world watches the unfolding of the horrific coal mining disaster in Turkey, more has emerged regarding the tragic death of two US miners earlier this week in West Virginia. On Monday, 48-year-old continuous miner operator Eric D. Legg and 46-year-old roof-bolter Gary P. Hensley where killed in a coal outburst while engaged in a dangerous “retreat mining” operation where pillars holding up a mine roof are extracted for their coal.

A coal miner was crushed to death in a southern Illinois mine Wednesday afternoon, the third such fatality in the US in as many days. The MC #1 Mine, owned by billionaire coal magnate Chris Cline, was the site of a fatal accident just six months ago, and at least two other deaths since 2009: here.

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4 thoughts on “Mining disasters in Turkey and the USA

  1. Turkish unions declare one-day strike over mine disaster

    Unions including the Confederation of Turkish Trade Unions, the Confederation of Public Sector Trade Unions, the Union of Chambers of Turkish Engineers and Architects and the Turkish Medical Association called a one-day strike Thursday 15 May following the deaths of over 270 coal miners in Turkey’s worst mining disaster at Soma in western Turkey. Around 100 miners remained trapped with hope for their safe rescue diminishing.

    Ahmet Faruk Unsal, president of Mazlumder, a Turkish human rights group spoke of poor work safety record in a press release: “Our relentless greed for profit, in competition with local and global capital, and the working conditions that follow, put the most basic human rights—even the right to life—at risk.” He added that over 1,200 workers died in work-related incidents in Turkey last year and 360 had died in the first four months of this year.


  2. Pingback: Turkish mine disaster survivor blames company | Dear Kitty. Some blog

  3. Pingback: Soma miners in Turkey, unsafe work and oppression | Dear Kitty. Some blog

  4. Pingback: Massey’s criminal mine disaster | Dear Kitty. Some blog

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