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| 6/18/2010 12:00:00 AM

Hopes dim of reaching trapped Colombia miners

June 18--Rescuers are again struggling to reach dozens of coal miners trapped in north-western Colombia since a fireball tore through the shaft they were in.

The attempt to locate the miners has been suspended several times since the explosion late on Wednesday because conditions are so dangerous.

At least 16 bodies have been brought to the surface and it is thought about 50 others remain underground.

Experts believe there is little or no chance that any of them survived.

Rescue workers at the San Fernando mine in Amaga, Antioquia province have been battling against leaking methane gas and debris from the explosion.

No hope

Workers have been drilling holes into the shaft and pumping in oxygen to ventilate it.
 
Relatives of the trapped miners gathered at a local sports hall awaiting news of their loved ones, but many have already given up hope.

"It's impossible that anyone is alive," 28-year-old Diana Sepulveda told Associated Press (AP) news agency.
 
Read more here.
 
Semana International delivers news about Colombia in English. Find more in our home.
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EDICIÓN 1829

PORTADA

Gran encuesta presidencial

Vargas Lleras arranca fuerte, Petro está estancado, Fajardo tiene cómo crecer y los partidos tradicionales andan rezagados. Entre los uribistas, Ramos se ve fuerte. Y Santos tiene 35 por ciento de aceptación. Gran encuesta de Invamer para Caracol Televisión, Blu Radio y SEMANA.