Ethiopian fighter jets have attacked Nevsun Resources’ Bisha gold mine in Eritrea, East Africa, according to reports from Sudanese newspaper Al-Sahafa.
Although the company has not confirmed the attack, it said that it faced ‘an act of vandalism’ that caused minor damage to the base of the tailings thickener at the mine, which resulted in water being released into the plant area.
Repair and clean-up works following the incident were minor and have been incorporated into the plant’s re-start plan.
Nevsun Resources has since implemented additional safeguards to ensure the safety and security of its site and personnel, while the Eritrean and mine security forces undertake an investigation.
Bisha gold mine is a large, high-grade volcanogenic massive sulphide deposit located 150km west of Asmara, Eritrea. It is mined using conventional drill and blast open pit mining techniques to remove waste and deliver ore to the run-of-mine stockpile.
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The mine, which is supported by the Government of Eritrea, has high-grade base metal reserves and good local road and port infrastructure.
In addition, Nevsun said that equipment supplier Thyssen-Krupp has completed replacement of the ball mill gear box bearings, as well as the re-installation of the gearbox.
Bisha was constructed on-time and under budget from 2008 to 2010. It produced low-cost gold-silver doré until mid-2013.