Landslide kills 14 at mine in Myanmar

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The jade hub of Hpakant, in the country's north, is frequently hit by deadly accidents. Photo credit: Getty

Fourteen people are dead after earth and mud engulfed a guard post during a landslide at a Myanmar jade mine.

Four people are also missing feared dead following the slip in the early hours of Sunday, police say.

The jade hub of Hpakant, in the country's north, is frequently hit by deadly accidents despite government pledges to clean up the lucrative mining industry.

In April, 55 workers were killed when a pond up slope from where they were digging breached its banks, leading authorities to suspended 17 mining blocks over safety concerns.

Local police chief Than Win Aung said on Sunday from the accident scene 14 bodies had been recovered and four people, two of them policemen who were guarding the site, were missing and feared dead.

"We were able to rescue two members of the police who only injured their heads and sent them to hospital," he said.

One policeman was confirmed dead, he added.

The government has ordered all mining activity in Hpakant to cease during Myanmar's May-October monsoon season but people in the area say scavengers still scour tailing piles for jade.

"The companies aren't operating because of the water," said Than Win Aung.

"Security people are on duty in order to prevent landslides due to illegal mining."

Yau Dau, 25, who lives next to the accident site, said the landslide happened after midnight.

"I was still awake. The sound of the landslide was really frightening. I thought we're gone ... our house was shaking," he said.

Reuters