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120 people killed, many missing following Jade mine's collapse in Myanmar

Christian Fernsby |
The battered bodies of more than 120 jade miners were pulled from a sea of mud after a landslide in northern Myanmar on Thursday after one of the worst accidents to hit the treacherous industry.

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Topics: MYANMAR   

Scores die each year while working in the country's lucrative but poorly regulated jade industry, which uses low-paid migrant workers to scrape out a gem highly coveted in China.

The disaster struck after heavy rainfall pounded the open-cast mines, close to the Chinese border in Kachin state, where billions of dollars of jade is believed to be scoured each year from bare hillsides.

Scores "were smothered by a wave of mud," the Myanmar Fire Services Department said in a Facebook post.

Working throughout the day to pull bodies out, "the total death toll so far is 126," it said.

"Search and rescue process is still ongoing."

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