April 11 - The rescue of nine Peruvian miners trapped for nearly a week underground has highlighted safety concerns about the country's vast illegal mining business. Deborah Gembara reports.
After nearly a week trapped underground, Peruvian miners were rescued on Wednesday. Cloaked in red blankets and special protective eyewear, the miners were led out by rescuers. The men had been stuck about 656 feet below ground since the illegal copper-and-gold mine partially collapsed last Thursday. They had been receiving oxygen and liquids through a giant hose that was in place before the accident. Miners acknowledged having many anxious moment as they waited for rescuers. SOUNDBITE: Miner Javier Tapia Lopez saying (Spanish): "Yes, there was a point when we thought we wouldn't get out." The incident at the mine -- also known as a wildcat mine prompted President Ollanta Humala to call for better conditions SOUNDBITE: President Ollanta Humala saying (Spanish): "I would invoke across the nation a policy that would help formalize these thousands of Peruvians who live off illegal mining under inferior human conditions where they work without plans and many times in a very amateur way just to make a little bit of money for their families." Peru's vast informal mining operations generate as much as $2 billion dollars a year in revenue. Deborah Gembara, Reuters.