Turkey gold mine: Nine workers missing after landslide

Turkey gold mine: Nine workers missing after landslide
View of the Copler mineGetty Images

Nine people are missing after a landslide hit a gold mine in eastern Turkey, authorities say.

Video from the scene appeared to show a torrent of mud sweeping through the valley where the Copler mine is located.

Interior Minister Ali Yerlikaya said the nine were believed to be trapped in the mine, adding that rescuers from neighbouring provinces were assisting.

The mine is operated by the Anagold Mining company.

In a statement, the company said the landslide occurred at 14:28 local time (11:28 GMT). It added it had immediately “activated its emergency plan and informed relevant public institutions and organisations”.

Satellite image of mine in 2006 and 2023

Ayhan Yuksel, president of the chamber of mining engineers, told the BBC’s Turkish service that cyanide stored in the mine could contaminate the surrounding area following the landslide.

In 2022, an accident at the same mine saw around 20 tonnes of a solution containing cyanide spill, raising fears the nearby Euphrates river would be affected.

The mine is located in Erzincan province, around 90km (55 miles) from the provincial capital Erzincan city, and over 600km east of Ankara.

There have been a string of mining accidents in Turkey in recent years. In 2022, an explosion in a coal mine killed 42 people.

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Source: bbc.co.uk

By David Ryckman