Court rules for hefty jail sentences over Turkey’s deadliest ever mine disaster in Soma (Hurriyet Daily News, 11 July 2018, Soma, Turkey)

A Turkish court has handed out hefty jail sentences over the death of 301 miners in Turkey’s deadliest ever mine disaster in the Soma district of the western province of Manisa on May 13, 2014.

The court ruled on July 11 to jail Can Gürkan, the mine owner, for 15 years, and the mine’s general manager, Ramazan Doğru, for 22.5 years.

The mine’s operations director Akın Çelik received a jail sentence of 18.5 years, while his deputy, İsmail Adalı, was given a sentence of 22.5 years.

A total of 301 mine workers were killed by carbon monoxide poisoning on May 13, 2014 after an explosion at the Soma Coal Mine Company’s mine.

More than 700 miners were inside the mine when a fire erupted during a shift change.

The accident sent shockwaves through Turkey, drawing delayed attention to the lack of job security and sparking outcry against companies making millions of dollars in profits without investing in the safety of their workers.

A prosecutor demanded the arrest of Soma Holding’s chairman Alp Gürkan on March 26 over the 2014 disaster, but the court declined this demand.

Fifty-one suspects were accused of failing to provide adequate safety measures leading to Turkey’s worst ever industrial disaster.

A total of 301 jail terms of up to 25 years were sought for each suspect in the case.

Relatives visit graves of killed miners in Soma on fourth anniversary of tragedy

Relatives visit graves of killed miners in Soma on fourth anniversary of tragedy

Somaminingdisaster

11.07.2018