Chile investigates large sinkhole that appeared mysteriously near copper mine

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Chilean authorities started investigating on Monday a mysterious sinkhole about 25 meters in diameter that appeared over the weekend in a mining area in the north of the country.

Chilean media showed aerial images of the sinkhole on land operated by a Canadian Lundin Mining LUN.TO copper mine, about 665 kilometers north of the capital Santiago.

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The National Service of Geology and Mining (Sernageomin) became aware of the sinkhole on Saturday and have sent specialist personnel to the area, the agency's director David Montenegro said in a statement.

The statement added there is a distance of nearly 200 meters to the bottom and that no materials have been detected there.

Mayor of the Tierra Amarilla commune Cristobal Zuniga told local media sinkhole is a consequence of the unconscious and unmeasured extractive activities that are carried out in the area.

Sernageomin reported the closure of areas from the entrance to the work site of Alcaparrosa mine, located near the sinkhole.

Lundin Mining did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Lundin Mining owns 80 percent of the property and the rest is held by Japan's Sumitomo Corporation.

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