The coal mine in Soma, where 301 people lost their lives last week after a tragic accident, was indisputably flawed, Turkish Energy Minister Taner Yildiz admitted on May 20, warning that the disaster was "an important threat", Hurriyet Daily News reported.
"If a disaster is not a natural one, there is always a flaw. If what had happened was a natural disaster, flaws could be subject to debate. But in this case, the flaws are indisputable," Yildiz said during an address to lawmakers in Ankara about the rescue efforts he coordinated in the wake of the accident.
"We see this accident as a very important threat. We must bring a new dimension to this prosecution in comparison with those that were made before," Yildiz said, while vowing for a comprehensive investigation.
"The Soma accident has to be examined in terms of human, political, administrative, judicial and technical monitoring," Yildiz said.
The accident has also sparked vast criticism, particularly regarding accountability and safety checks in the mines. Yildiz was on the forefront of the accusations directed at the government, along with Labor Minister Faruk Celik.
Yildiz has rejected the criticism, saying the government considers the disaster as an incident "above politics."
Yildiz also said families have received financial help for funerals and added the state will provide help for the education of the victims' children.