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33 Miners Missing, Presumed Trapped After Explosion In Chinese Coal Mine

More than 30 miners are presumed to be trapped underground after a gas explosion at a coal mine in China.

Rescue attempts are underway at the rural mine near the city of Chongqing.

State media report that the explosion hit Monday morning, NPR's Rob Schmitz says, when 35 miners were working. Two of them escaped, but the other 33 are missing.

The fate of the 33 miners is unknown, China's CCTV reports.

"An investigation is underway into the cause of the accident," Rob says. "Last month, a gas explosion in a coal mine in northwestern China killed 20 miners. A preliminary investigation has found that accident was caused by illegal mining."

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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