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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Mine Proceeds to Pay Strikers

Payments to more than 150 Siberian miners who have been on a hunger strike for nearly two weeks demanding months of overdue wages will begin within days, a senior legislator said Thursday after an agreement was signed to sell the privately owned coal mine.

The agreement came as 156 workers from the Yeniseiskaya mine in Chernogorsk, in the Khakasia republic, entered the 11th day of their hunger strike to demand 7.8 million rubles ($270,000).

Under the agreement, the mine's owners are to conclude all negotiations on selling the mine by June 10 and use the proceeds to pay their debt to the workers in full by June 20, said Andrei Isayev, chairman of the State Duma Labor and Social Policy Committee, Interfax reported. Khakasia's government has pledged to help pay the wages by providing a loan, said Isayev, who promised his committee will make sure the agreement is fulfilled.

Valery Shavyrkin, a deputy chairman of the Khakasia government, said on NTV television that the first payments could be made Friday, but miners said they would continue their strike at the mine until they are paid. Doctors warned that half of the miners were in serious danger and should end the strike for health reasons, Itar-Tass reported.