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Ten Confirmed Dead from Colliery Explosion in Guizhou
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All the 10 miners trapped in Tuesday's coal mine explosion in southwestern Guizhou Province have been confirmed dead, local coal mine safety watchdog said on Sunday.

The rescue operation ended on Sunday morning after rescuers found the bodies of the last five missing miners at 6:40 AM Sunday, according to the provincial work safety administration.

Rescuers are clearing the collapsed tunnels and investigation into the cause of the accident is underway.

Families of the victims have arrived at the coal mine and local government is negotiating with them on the funerals and compensation, according to the administration.

The explosion occurred at 2:28 AM Tuesday in the Wangjiazhai Coal Mine, owned by Guizhou Shuicheng Mining Group Co. in Liupanshui, Guizhou.

According to the administration, 220 miners were working underground when the accident occurred, and 210 were evacuated safely.

The state-run Wangjiazhai pit has an annual production capacity of 3 million tons. The Pingdong shaft, where the accident occurred, produces 1.5 million tons of coal a year.

(Xinhua News Agency April 1, 2007)

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