19 May 2014

Coal company officials under arrest

9:02 am on 19 May 2014

Police in Turkey have arrested at least 24 people after the country's worst mining disaster last Tuesday.

Executives of the coal mining company at Soma are among those detained in the western town of Soma, where the disaster happened.

The bodies of the last missing miners were brought to the surface on Saturday. The final death toll is 301.

There have been fierce protests against the government and the operators of the coal mine in recent days.

The Dogan news agency said general manager Ramazan Dogru and the operations manager Akin Celik were among those arrested on Sunday.

The BBC reports the disaster occurred when an explosion sent carbon monoxide gas into the tunnels while 787 miners were underground.

Soma Holding said on Friday that an unexplained build-up of heat appeared to have led to the collapse.

Soldiers on guard in front of the mine on 17 May.

Soldiers on guard in front of the mine on 17 May. Photo: AFP