Reports from eastern Ukraine’s Luhansk region say the death toll from an underground coal-mine explosion has been raised to 17, with Russia-backed separatist leaders who control the mine saying all the bodies of missing miners have been recovered.
The revised death toll was announced on April 27 after search-and-rescue workers recovered the miners' bodies from beneath debris inside the mine in the village of Yurivka, which is in territory controlled by Russia-backed separatists.
Russia’s Emergency Situations Ministry says it sent mine rescuers to the Skhidcarbon mine at the request of separatist leaders who control the mine’s operations.
Rescue workers from the Ukrainian government did not have official access to the area.
A methane gas explosion ripped through the mine on April 25, reportedly causing parts of the mine to collapse.
The Skhidcarbon mine had been closed in 2014 due to the conflict between Ukrainian government forces and the Russia-backed separatists. But it was reopened in 2018.