Landslide at Myanmar jade mine kills dozens

Landslide at Myanmar jade mine kills dozens
Jade scavenging in Myanmar
Image caption Many people gather at mining sites to scavenge through rubble for jade. File image

At least 50 people have been killed in a landslide at a jade mining site in northern Myanmar, officials say.

Some reports say that more people may be buried at the site in the Hpakant area of Kachin state.

A wave of mud triggered by heavy rain engulfed those collecting stones, the fire service said.

Myanmar is the world's biggest source of jade but its mines have seen numerous accidents, many involving people who scavenge for stones.

The country's fire service department said in a Facebook post: "Now in total 50 dead bodies. We are still working on the rescue process."

It added: "The jade miners were smothered by a wave of mud, which hit after heavy rainfall."

It is unclear exactly who was affected by the accident. Hundreds of people gather at mines to sift through rubble discarded from lorries, hoping to find jade stones.

The rubble creates large slopes that can be dangerous.

More than 100 people died last year alone at mining sites.

Myanmar's jade trade is reported to be worth more than $30bn (£24bn) a year. Hpakant is the site of the world's biggest jade mine.

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Media captionMyanmar's deadly "jade rush"
Source :
www.bbc.co.uk