Morocco: Outcry after Two Brothers Died in Abandoned Mine

Morocco: Outcry after Two Brothers Died in Abandoned Mine

Protests have been building up in the eastern town of Jerada after two brothers drowned, last Friday, at an abandoned coal mine.

The two illegal miners, aged 23 and 30, lost their lives after a flood flushed through the disused mine.

The protesters denounced the delay by authorities in extracting the bodies from the well and the lack of adequate equipment of local rescue services.

The rescue was accomplished after 36 hours and the bodies of the victims were buried on Monday afternoon.

The demonstrators have adopted the slogans of the Al-Hirak al-Shaabi movement that staged a string of protests this year in the neighboring Rif region.

Jerada has flourished during the colonial era as a coal mining center. But since the 1990s, the closure of coal mines gave way to the rise of clandestine mining activities. Around 3000 gain their living from extracting coal from disused mines in Jerada.

The Moroccan government said it has launched a probe while MPs have called for putting an end to clandestine digging.

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