Ukraine mourns miners killed in Zasyadko gas blast

5 March 2015 12:37
(QHA) -

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko has declared a day of national mourning for the more than 30 people killed in a coal mine blast in the eastern city of Donetsk.

Poroshenko decreed a minute's silence to be observed at noon on March 5 for victims of the blast at the Zasyadko mine in the rebel-controlled city.

Emergency officials in the self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic said the bodies of 32 miners had been recovered and one was still missing.

The blast occurred before dawn on March 4 more than 1,000 meters underground.

Russian-backed separatist officials said the accident was caused by methane gas.

Ukrainian authorities attempted to send rescue teams to the region, but Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk said the separatists refused to give them access.