Turkish EM: negligence in mine blast will be punished

Any negligence on the part of officials or the private sector will be punished, said Turkey’s Energy Minister Taner Yildiz

Any negligence on the part of officials or the private sector will be punished, said Turkey’s Energy Minister Taner Yildiz

ANKARA - Any negligence on the part of officials or the private sector will be punished, said Turkey’s Energy Minister Taner Yildiz on Tuesday's coalmine blast which claimed 282 lives so far.

“All of the dead bodies, excluding three or four, will be given to their relatives by this evening,” Yildiz told the press at the scene of the rescue efforts near the mine entrance Thursday.

“We should not talk politics over our dead brothers here,” Yildiz said, adding that the technical issues of the accident will be discussed after all the workers are out of the mine. 

Turkey has declared three days of national mourning - during which flags will fly at half-mast and parliament will be closed for the victims of "the worst incident in the country’s mining history."

The exact cause of the blast has yet to be officially announced but it is suspected that an explosion and fire followed an electrical fault. Yildiz ruled out the possibility of a firedamp or methane gas explosion, saying the deaths were due to carbon monoxide poisoning.

Copyright © 2014 Anadolu Agency