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Rescue teams arrive to search for survivors at a collapsed illegal gold mine in Santander de Quilichao, southern Colombia, Thursday, May 1, 2014. Colombian rescuers hunted for more than a dozen people feared trapped beneath debris left by in the collapse of an illegal gold mine that killed at least three people, officials said. (AP Photo/El Pais, Oswaldo Paez)
Survivors unlikely after Colombia mine collapse

First Published May 03 2014 01:12 pm • Last Updated May 03 2014 02:45 pm

Bogota, Colombia • Authorities have given up hope of finding alive 13 missing miners trapped under 20 meters of heavy debris after a gold mine collapsed in southwest Colombia.

"I pray to God for survivors but it’s impossible," said Eduardo Grijalba, mayor of the rural town of Santander de Quilichao where the tragedy took place Wednesday night.

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The bodies of three people were pulled from the ruble on Thursday but since then rescue workers have been unable to dig to where the men were trapped.

Mining accidents are common in Colombia, especially at wildcat mines like this one in areas dominated by criminal gangs.

Grijalba is pleading with President Juan Manuel Santos to help end illegal mining in the town after failed efforts by local authorities to shut down the mine that collapsed.




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