Archive for Thursday, March 22, 2007

Nation mourns 108 killed in mine explosion

March 22, 2007


— Flooded caverns and flammable gas hampered the search Wednesday for two workers missing after an explosion at a Siberian coal mine, as Russia held a day of mourning for the 108 miners killed in the country's worst mining disaster in more than a decade.

Flags flew at half-staff, church services were held nationwide and TV stations took entertainment programs off the air Wednesday to mourn the victims of the mining disaster as well as for two other tragedies - a nursing home fire that left 63 dead and a weekend plane crash that killed six.

President Vladimir Putin led televised minutes of silence with his Cabinet, the head of the Russian Orthodox Church broadcast condolences and lawmakers called for a full investigation of the disasters.

About 200 workers were underground at the time of the blast, which occurred early Monday at a depth of about 885 feet. About 93 made it to the surface safely.


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