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Hunan Urged to Close down Unsafe Coal Mines 'ASAP'
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The State Administration of Coal Mine Safety Supervision urged on Thursday the provincial government of Hunan, central China, to close down its 400 coal mines with hidden dangers.

Wang Shuhe, vice director of the administration, who led a monitoring team in Hunan, asked the provincial government to pay enough attention to the coal mines, which should had been closed down last year, and shut them as soon as possible.

The official said related departments in Hunan should strictly carry out the safety production inspection in all its coal mines.

Guo Kailang, governor assistant of Hunan, said the provincial government already shut down 135 coal mines before the arrival of the monitoring team and the 400 coal mines are planned to be closed down before February.

Guo said Hunan sees a decline of coal mine accidents during the past few years.

In 2005, coal mine accidents in Hunan dropped by five percent as against the previous year and the death toll also fell by 6.3 percent.

(Xinhua News Agency January 13, 2006)

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