Poland's miners protest Russian coal imports

Staff Writer
Columbus CEO

WARSAW, Poland (AP) — Some 200 Polish coal miners are blocking railway tracks on the border with Russia to protest imports of cheap Russian coal, saying it threatens their jobs.

The protest Wednesday came two days after Poland's new government, led by Prime Minister Ewa Kopacz, was sworn in. Also Wednesday the left-wing opposition called on Kopacz to hold an urgent debate on the mining industry.

One of Europe's leading coal producers, Poland says it will keep using the fuel as its main source of energy for decades to come. But under falling exports and the inflow of cheaper coal from Russia's Kaliningrad exclave, many mines are heavily indebted, threatening hundreds of jobs.

The protesters blocked cargo railway tracks from Russia, saying some 11 million tons of Russian coal came that way last year.