Turkish Mine Denies Negligence

    Soma Holding Chairman Alp Gurkan talks during a news conference in Soma, a district in Turkey's western province of Manisa, after a coal mine explosion May 16, 2014. The operator of a Turkish mine in which 284 people died this week and 18 remain trapped said on Friday the exact cause of a fire was still unclear but that a build-up of heat had caused a partial collapse in the plant. REUTERS/Osman Orsal (TURKEY - Tags: DISASTER ENERGY BUSINESS HEADSHOT) - RTR3PFIV

    Osman Orsal/Reuters

    The Turkish company whose mine was the site of an underground fire that is expected to leave 300 dead says it had good safety practices. “There is no negligence … We would not want harm to come to a single fingernail of our workers,” the mine’s engineer claimed. The mine’s general manager added: “It was caused by an undetermined spark. We believe that the fire grew because there was an entry of clean air there.” The fire led to the worst disaster in the history of mines in Turkey, and has prompted a fresh round of anger directed towards Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan. Meanwhile, his energy minister, Taner Yildiz, said Friday that if negligence in the mine is found, there will be punishment. “We won’t take any notice of their tears,” he said.

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