Toll in China coal mine gas leak rises to 35

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BEIJING, Nov 9 (Reuters) The death toll from a gas leak at a coal mine in southwestern China has risen to 35, state media said today.

The last two bodies were recovered early today, rescuers at the Qunli Colliery in Guizhou province told the Xinhua news agency.

A total of 86 miners were underground when the leak occurred on Thursday, Xinhua said. Fifty-two were rescued, but one died later in hospital.

The cause of the gas leak was still under investigation.

China has the world's deadliest coal industry. Accidents in its mines killed 3,069 in the first 10 months of this year, a drop of 19 per cent over the same period in 2006, state media say.

Landlocked Guizhou, one of China's poorest regions, has reported five coal mine gas leaks and blasts since late August, Xinhua said.

REUTERS GL RK0830

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