Condolences continue to pour in over Soma mine disaster

Thursday, May 15, 2014

US, Britain's Queen Elizabeth II among those expressing sorrow over Turkish mine disaster

US, Britain's Queen Elizabeth II among those expressing sorrow over Turkish mine disaster

ANKARA – Countries around the world have offered their condolences and help to Turkey following the coal mine fire in which 283 workers died. 

White House spokesman Jay Carney said on Thursday: “We are ready to assist the Turkish government if necessary, and we will continue to stand together in this time of tragedy."

Many heads of states including the presidents of China, Pakistan, Greece, Kazakhstan, Italy, Canada, UK, Southern Cyprus, France, Netherland, Kosovo, Germany, Northern Cyprus, Iran, Kyrgyzstan, Ukraine, Spain, Sweden, Afghanistan, Azerbaijan, Armenia, Japan, Bosnia-Herzegovina, South Korea, Lithuania have Russia sent their condolences to Turkey. 

Queen Elizabeth II also offered her condolences. 

The leaders of Georgia and Latvia phoned Turkish President Abdullah Gul and expressed their regrets.

- National mourning

Some Middle East nations also expressed their condolences, including the United Arab Emirates, Tunisia, Mauritania, the Palestinian government in the West Bank, Hamas from the Gaza Strip, Qatar, Kuwait, Bahrain, Israel, Egypt and Jordan. 

The United Nations, European Union and European Parliament have stated that they are ready to help Turkey. 

The exact cause of the blast has yet to be officially announced, but it is suspected that the explosion and fire followed an electrical fault.

Firedamp and a methane explosion have been ruled out, with most deaths being attributed to carbon monoxide poisoning.

Turkey has declared three days of national mourning during which flags will fly at half-mast and parliament will be closed in honor of the victims.

The death toll was announced as 283 Thursday evening by Turkey's energy minister Taner Yildiz.

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