Spanish miners stage sit-in

FAR, far away from a Chilean mine where 33 trapped men struggle to cope as they await rescue, 50 Spanish miners are also deep in the earth’s bowels – but by their own choice.

Yesterday marked Day 9 of an unusual coal miners’ protest, a sit-in staged 500 metres underground. No showers, no toilets, no internet and soot-dusted mattresses are a small price to pay, the miners reason, in exchange for a more hopeful future for their beleaguered industry.

Their strike in northern Palencia province is the culmination of a long dispute over unpaid wages and the future of an antiquated industry struggling to survive as it competes with gas-fired electrical utility plants and heavily subsidised renewable energy projects.

The Spaniards vehemently deny any suggestion they are cashing in on the South American crisis.

Spain’s coal mining industry employs about 10,000 people, down from 50,000 in the late 1970s.


Lifestyle

The early morning routine is always the same. I get up, have a quick breakfast before helping my brother, who I live with, get his kids ready for school.Working Life with Dr Muslim Moula Buksh

You might be your parents’ favourite, but that doesn’t mean they actually have any baby pictures of you.9 things all youngest children know to be true

Now’s the time to give the stars of your garden some pampering.Now’s the time to give the stars of your garden some pampering

Low blood pressure, or hypotension, can occur for a few reasons.Natural health: I'm seven months pregnant and have low blood pressure; I have psorasis due to work pressure

More From The Irish Examiner