PBI-Mexico accompanies OFPC at the 14th anniversary of the Pasta de Conchos coal mine explosion
On February 19, the Peace Brigades International-Mexico Project posted, “PBI accompanies the Organización Familia Pasta de Conchos (OFPC) in commemoration of the tragedy of the Pasta de Conchos mine. At 14 years of the tragedy, families continue to demand justice and the rescue of their families.”
The explosion at the Grupo Mexico’s Pasta de Conchos coal mine near Nueva Rosita, San Juan de Sabinas municipality in the state of Coahuila on February 19, 2006 killed 65 people. To date only two bodies have been recovered from the mine.
Reuters has reported, “A special prosecutor for the case blamed Grupo Mexico for allowing a deadly mix of methane, heat and oxygen to build up in the mine, failing to build proper ventilation shafts or to neutralize explosive coal dust. Government inspectors who failed to enforce the necessary safety precautions were also implicated.”
That article adds, “In the moments following the blast, the workers were likely buried by thousands of tons of rock. Investigators also said it was possible that many of the men were incinerated.”
On May 1, 2019, Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador pledged to recover the 63 bodies still trapped in the mine.
On February 19 of this year, Prensa Latina reported, “President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador announced today that work to recover the bodies of 63 miners trapped in the Pasta de Conchos mine begins this year on the 14th anniversary of that tragedy.”
Expansion further reports that the recovery will start in October.
Members of the Pasta de Conchos Family Organization have been threatened and harassed on numerous occasions in connection with their work. Cristina has been harassed, beaten, threatened and subjected to defamatory accusations.
The Pasta de Conchos Family Organization has received protective accompaniment from PBI-Mexico since 2014.