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UPDATE: Turkey mine disaster ignites angry protests

Hopes faded of finding more survivors in a coal mine in western Turkey on Wednesday, where 238 workers were confirmed killed and 120 more are still feared to be trapped.  

An injured miner is carried to an ambulance after being rescued from a coal mine he was in trapped in Soma

Fire knocked out power and shut down ventilation shafts and elevators on Tuesday afternoon.

An injured miner is carried to an ambulance after being rescued from a coal mine he was trapped in, in Soma

After an all-night rescue effort, emergency workers pumped oxygen into the mine ​in Soma to try to keep those trapped alive. 

Rescue team members carry a dead miner after a mine explosion near Soma, Manisa province, Turkey, early 14 May 2014.

Initial reports suggested an electrical fault caused the blaze, but Mr Mehmet Torun, a board member and former head of the Chamber of Mining Engineers who was at the scene, said a disused coal seam had heated up, expelling carbon monoxide through the mine’s tunnels and galleries. 

“They are ventilating the shafts but carbon monoxide kills in 3 or 5 minutes,” he told Reuters by telephone. “Unless we have a major miracle, we shouldn’t expect anyone to emerge alive at this point,” he said​.

Thousands of family members and co-workers gathered outside the town’s hospital searching for information on their loved ones. 

People cry after their relatives died in an explosion in Manisa on May 13, 2014.

Anguish has quickly turned to anger over the deadly fire at the mine about 480 km southwest of Istanbul. 

Riot police run away from the flames of a fire bomb thrown by protesters.

Around 800 protesters shouted slogans against the government and attempted to march from the Middle East Technical University to the energy ministry. 

A protester hurling stones at Turkish police.

They blame Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan’s government for ignoring repeated warnings about the safety of the country’s mines. 

Protesters shouting slogans against the government. They faced police intervention when they attempted to march from the Middle East Technical University to the energy ministry.

Source: The Guardian, Reuters, NBC News

Photos: Reuters