Middle East

Dozens of people feared missing after a landslide at Myanmar’s jade mine

Authorities have been conducting search and rescue operations after a landslide occurred at the Jade mine in northern Myanmar, leaving nearly 80 people missing.

Myanmar produces 90% of the world’s jade. (AFP)

Landslides can occur at the jade mine in northern Myanmar, leaving dozens of people missing.

A landslide occurred early Wednesday in the Hpakant region of Kachin State, which occurred around 4 am Wednesday (2130 GMT on Tuesday), threatening to flush about 80 people into the lake by mining waste, Kachin said. An official at the Network Development Foundation said. ..

“Authorities arrived at the scene around 7 am. [1230 GMT] Dashi Now Lone, a civil society group official, said on the phone that no corpse had been found so far.

The Mizzima news portal and KhatThit media also reported that dozens of people appear to be missing in an incident at Hpakant, the center of Myanmar’s secret jade industry. In another landslide last weekend, the media reported that at least six people had died.

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Inadequately regulated mines

Fatal landslides and other accidents are common in poorly regulated Hpakant mines. These mines are attracting poor workers from all over Myanmar, primarily in search of gems for export to China.

Despite intensifying conflicts since the Myanmar military seized power in the February coup, economic pressure from the Covid-19 pandemic has increased immigrants to the jade mine.

The exiled government of Nobel laureate Aung San Suu Kyi has promised to cleanse the industry when it came to power in 2016, but activists say it hasn’t changed much.

More than 170 people, many of them immigrants, died in one of Hpakant’s worst disasters last July after mining waste collapsed into a lake.

Myanmar produces 90% of the world’s jade. Mostly from Hpakant, the Rights Group states that mining companies associated with military elites and ethnic armed groups earn billions of dollars annually.

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Source: TRT World and distributors

https://www.trtworld.com/asia/dozens-feared-missing-after-landslide-at-myanmar-jade-mine-52875?utm_source=other&utm_medium=rss Dozens of people feared missing after a landslide at Myanmar’s jade mine

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