3 dead, 3 injured in Morocco mine collapse

Arab World Materials 14 November 2018 03:25 (UTC +04:00)

Three people were killed and three others were wounded on Tuesday after a mine for zinc and lead collapsed in the eastern province of Jerada, the Moroccan official MAP news agency reported, according to Xinhua.

The mine was exploited by a cooperative with an authorization to extract zinc and lead in the area of Ras Ousfour, the report cited Jerada authorities said.

The injured people were rescued and rushed to a hospital in the neighbouring city of Oujda to receive necessary health care, while the bodies of the three victims were removed from under the rubble, the same source noted.

An investigation into the incident is underway.

Last December, the deaths of two brother miners digging in deserted mines sparked months-long protest in the mining-dependent province of Jerada.

Jerada had been growing during flourishing mining activities since 1920s, but it suffered a major blow in late 1990s after state-owned coal mines that employed thousands of local people were forced to close down due to rising digging costs and declining coal prices.

However, few small cooperatives are still exploiting some mines legally, while many local residents have continued to scratch a living by mining illegally in the abandoned mines.