450 miners fired after mine collapse in Turkey’s Southeast

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Relatives of the miners, who are trapped under the mine, wait as search and rescue team members work at the disaster site after a landslide caused a collapse at the private "Madenkoy copper mine" in Turkey's southeastern Siirt Province's Sirvan District on November 19, 2016.

Four hundred fifty men working in a mine in Siirt’s Şirvan district where at least 16 miners died in a collapse on Nov. 17 have been fired from the Madenköy copper mine.

According to the Sözcü daily, Park Elektrik A.Ş., part of Turkey’s Ciner Holding, recently informed 450 subcontracted workers that their contracts were being terminated by the company.

A truck driver told Sözcü that they had not been paid for two months since the mine collapse despite the fact that they were promised their salaries after discussions with company officials. The driver also said the company plans to employ 300 Chinese miners in their place.

At least 16 miners were trapped in the Madenköy copper mine late on Nov. 17 after it was hit by a landslide, triggering a collapse that initially killed four people whose bodies were recovered by rescuers.

Park Elektrik A.Ş. blamed heavy rains for the landslide, which collapsed a hillside, burying the workers and their equipment.

Six people including the mine’s manager and two work safety experts have been detained by the police so far in relation to the mine tragedy in Şirvan.

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