Apr 18, 2014

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Coal miners in Spain clash with riot police ongoing strike

1. Spanish coal miners have marched into Madrid on the eve of a major demonstration against cuts to pit subsidies that they say will destroy thousands of jobs. Miners who marched Aragon, Asturias and Castile and Leon will march to the city centre in their mining clothes and with their lamps lit ahead of a larger demonstration on Wednesday when unions say they expect 25,000 people.

2. Violent clashes have broken out in more than a month of protests over the government’s decision to slash coal industry subsidies this year to 111 million euros (£88 million) from 301 million euros last year.

3. Unions say the cuts will destroy coal mining, which relies on state aid to compete with cheaper imports, and threaten the jobs of around 8,000 coal miners and up to 30,000 other people indirectly employed by the sector.

4. Spain’s mines have been gradually closing over the past 20 years. Only around 40 are still active, mostly in the north, and they employ about 8,000 miners as well as sustaining other jobs indirectly. But Spanish coal’s state subsidies must by eliminated by 2018 under European Union agreements.

5. A striking miner at a road block near the Soton Mine, Langreo

6. A barricade built by coal miners burns during clashes with the Spanish riot civil guard at the Pozo Santiago coal mine in Aller, in northern Spain

7. A striking miner fires a missile at police at the Soton mine

8. Spanish Civil Guard are pictured during a miners demonstration in Caborana near Oviedo, northern Spain

9. Spanish riot Civil Guard fire tear gas to disperse a miners’ demonstration n Caborana, near Oviedo

10. Motorists take pictures of a road block near Langreo

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