Thousands protest against Morocco's coal 'mines of death'

In the northern Moroccan city of Jerada, hundreds of people risk their lives every day to scrape a meagre living in abandoned coal pits. Last week two brothers aged 23 and 30 died in a tunnel accident 85m below ground. A survivor of the mining accident explains that miners go down into the pit at 4am and work until 5pm. “I have no other choice, there is nowhere else I can work here,” Abderrazak Daioui says. The deaths of the two brothers have sparked mass protests against working conditions and economic hardship. “People cannot pay their water and electricity bills [and] are suffering from misery and poverty,” demonstrator Abdelilah Amri says. The government says that it is ready to meet local lawmakers to discuss problems in the region.