More victims of police protection of illegal mining


Another of the Luhansk "kopanky" or illegal mines where people work despite the gravest danger due to the real poverty in the area


The latest tragedy involving illegal mines took place during the night of 12 July with two men from Krasny Luch receiving burns to 90% of their body and burns to the respiratory tract. The men, working as guards at a kopanka, or illegal mine, around 300 metres from the Miusynskaya Mine, were pouring fuel from one barrel to another when the explosion happened.  The two men died on 16 July.

The Luhansk Regional Branch of the Committee of Voters of Ukraine [CVU] believes that it is the police who bear responsibility for the tragedy.  The two men were already in hospital when a report appeared in the press from the Luhansk Regional Ministry of the Interior. It stated that the Krasny Luch Police “in the course of operational measures … had documented the existence of”  … the very same kopanka at which the accident happened

This came at least 5 days after a local MP, Volodymyr Landik informed the very same department of the Interior Ministry that residents of the settlement around the Miusynskaya Mine had shown him an opening 200-300 metres from the mine shaft where they said coal was being extracted during the night.

The Luhansk Regional CVU suspects that after receiving the deputy’s letter, those providing “protection” warned the owner who ordered that production be stopped.  It was in folding things up that the accident happened.

It is also to be noted that the men who were in a critical state and placed in the Krasny Luch City Hospital did not get adequate medical care. This was explained by the Chief Doctor as being because the men don’t have relatives who could purchase the expensive medication needed. This, it would appear, suited the regional authorities fine, since there was no help from them at all.

In January this year the Luhansk Regional CVU reported deaths of people working in gambling outfits – also illegal and also business getting “protection” from the police. 

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