GREYMOUTH, New Zealand — All 29 workers missing underground in a New Zealand coal mine are believed to have died after a second explosion, police said.
Police superintendent Gary Knowles said the second explosion occurred mid-afternoon todayWednesday, almost exactly five days after the first blast in the Pike River mine.
Potentially explosive methane gas had been swirling in the mine since the initial blast, keeping rescuers from entering to search for 29 men unaccounted for.
"Today there was another massive explosion underground and based on that explosion no one would have survived," said police superintendent Gary Knowles, the head of the rescue operation. "We are now in recovery mode."
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Pope apologizes for acting slowly on priest
MEXICO CITY — Pope Benedict XVI lamented that the Vatican acted "slowly and late" in a scandal surrounding the Legionaries of Christ, and a Vatican official called Tuesday for an investigation into who covered up for the conservative order's disgraced founder.
The pope insisted, however, that the order has done good and should not be dissolved despite the double life of the late Rev. Marciel Maciel, who was discovered to have abused seminarians and fathered at least three children.
"Unfortunately we addressed these things very slowly and late," Benedict said in a book released Tuesday.
Maciel founded the Legion in 1941 in Mexico and it became one of the wealthiest and fastest-growing orders in the Roman Catholic Church. Despite long-standing allegations that Maciel was a pedophile, no action was taken until 2006, when the Vatican ordered him to a lifetime of penance and prayer — though it did not say for what.