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Bishkek Questions Chinese Firm’s Decision To Fire Hundreds Of Miners

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The Kyrgyz government wants to know more about the decision by the Chinese company Full Gold Mining to fire 370 miners in southern Kyrgyzstan.

The head the State Committee for Industry, Energy, and Mineral Resources, Ulan Ryskulov, told RFE/RL that Full Gold Mining officials were invited to discuss the situation at a committee’s session on January 8.

Kyrgyz miners’ unions and environmental experts were also invited to take part, Ryskulov said.

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Full Gold Mining said on January 5 that it was dismissing 370 Kyrgyz miners who were working at the Ishtamberdi mines in the Jalal-Abad region.

Regional officials told RFE/RL that the miners had refused to accept amendments to their contracts that would have decreased their salaries. The officials said that contradicts Kyrgyzstan’s Labor Code.

Full Gold Mining officials have said they are unable to prevent salary decreases due to “ongoing financial issues.”

The miners warned that they will start mass protests unless they are reinstated with their previous salaries.

The Chinese company has been operating at the Ishtamberdi mines since 2011.

Source: rferl.org

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