The Soma Mine Disaster
On May 13 in Soma, Manisa, Turkey, the worst mine disaster in Turkey’s history took place, killing 301 people. The explosion resulted in an underground mine fire, lasting for two days. The cause is still being investigated. The fire began during the mine’s shift change. There were 787 workers underground during the explosion. The fire was a major topic of controversy because miners had previously protested about the dangerous conditions during 2013 and their demands were rejected in the National Assembly of Turkey in the weeks before the disaster. The Turkish police detained 24 people, including the operations manager of the mine, Ramazan Dogru. Soma has since denied accusations of negligence.