World Bulletin/News Desk
Time has run out for 17 miners trapped for more than 24-hours in a coal mine in China’s restive western East Turkestan (Xinjiang) region, with the country's official news agency reporting on Monday that all had died.
Rescuers had been pouring nitrogen into the mine in an effort to dilute a gas concentration which had caused a blast, trapping the miners, Xinhua reported Sunday.
On Monday it said that all 17 had died.
The blast occurred late Saturday when 20 people were working inside the mine, which is around 75 miles (120 kilometers) from Urumqi, the regional capital.
Three of those trapped were reported to have been rescued.
China recorded 589 mining-related accidents last year, with 1,049 people dead or missing - a figure 24 percent down on 2012 as the government has sought to enforce regulations and lax safety procedures, while shuttering some small mines, a major source of accidents.
An explosion in late 2013 killed 21 workers at a coalmine in East Turkestan.
The area is home to the Uighur Turkic ethnic group, which constitute around 45 percent of the population.
The Uighur have accused China of carrying out repressive policies that restrain their religious, commercial and cultural activities.Güncelleme Tarihi: 07 Temmuz 2014, 11:50