Bangkok, Aug 14 (EFE).- At least 36 people have gone missing following a landslide in a jade mine in northern Myanmar, rescue teams confirmed to EFE on Monday.
Miners were digging for jade on the mountainside on Sunday when they were struck by the landslide, a remote mountainous area in the northern state of Kachin, a member of the Myanmar Rescue Organization told EFE under anonymity.
He added that the area had been witnessing incessant rainfall in recent days, and that rescue efforts were still underway.
Mining-related accidents are common in Hpakant, where miners work in extremely precarious conditions.
In July 2020, more than 160 miners were trapped in a landslide while extracting the jade during heavy rains.
In 2019, at least 54 people died from a landslide in another part of the mining area, located about 800 kilometers (497 miles) north of the capital city of Naypyidaw.
Thousands of impoverished people from all over the country flock to the jade mines – to which the foreign press is not allowed access – searching for fortune or livelihood.
But in most cases, the benefits are scarce, and the risks are high.
Myanmar is the world’s largest producer of jadeite, a prized variety of jade extracted mainly in the Kachin mountains and which enjoys a high demand in neighboring China. EFE