Death toll in Pakistan coal mine blast climbs to 23

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Some labourers are reportedly still trapped under rubble of the mine, which collapsed due to a gas explosion.

Attaullah Khan, Pakistan's director of disaster management, on May 5 said a blast caused by a buildup of methane gas in the Marwar coalfields in Balochistan Province led to the collapse of a mine, trapping many workers.

Emergency services were able to rescue nine others, who were brought to nearby hospitals. Chief inspector of mines Iftikhar Ahmad said the rescue operation overnight pulled out 11 injured miners. "The owners and managers of mining companies don't care for poor workers because for them money is more important than our lives", Akhtarzada, a survivor of the Marwar incident, said.

"The collapse apparently took place because of a gas explosion and the miners working at that time were trapped inside".

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Mining is considered highly risky in Pakistan where dozens of miners are killed each year due to lack of modern mining facilities, training and equipment.

The resolution said those found guilty of negligence be awarded punishments, mines where such fatal incidents took place be sealed and laws pertaining to safety of miners be implemented. Mine explosions are common in the country with the PCMLF reporting the deaths of between 100 and 200 labourers every year.

A separate accident in the northern part of the Baluchistan region killed seven miners and injured two, government officials said.

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