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Southern Silver Plans to Conduct Intensive Exploration Program at Cerro Las Minitas Project

Southern Silver Exploration Corp. (TSX VENTURE:SSV)(FRANKFURT:SEG) reported today that the company plans to conduct an intensive exploration program on the Cerro Las Minitas project commencing in February 2011.

The program will consist of airborne, ground geophysics, and a minimum of 3,000 metres of diamond drilling.

The geophysical program will include:

  • An Airborne Magnetic Survey covering the entire 10,980 hectare property, including the known mineralized zones at Cerro Las Minitas. The airborne survey, consisting of 1,100 line-kilometres, will commence mid to late February and will assist in understanding the geology and identifying drill targets. The geophysical targets will be examined with follow-up mapping, sampling and ground geophysics.
  • A Ground I.P. Survey, consisting of approximately 20 line kilometres, will cover the immediate area of historic mining at Cerro Las Minitas. The survey will help define the lateral and down-dip extent of the wide (up to 60 metres) contact skarn zone that is located at the contact of an intrusion and limestone. The skarn contains well documented high-grade, silver-, lead- and zinc-rich replacement chimney and manto deposits, which were the focus of historical mining in the area. In addition, the skarn hosts disseminated copper and gold mineralization.

The geophysical program will cover both known areas of mineralization and newly recognized unexplored regions that may then be prioritized based on similarity to the known mineralized zones.

A minimum 3,000 metre diamond drill program will consist of two phases:

  • The primary phase is planned to commence upon receipt of environmental permits, which are currently in the application process, and will focus on geological targets and those targets identified by previous drilling.
  • The second phase will test the anomalies generated by the magnetic and I.P. surveys.

Previously reported assays from a program of detailed mapping and sampling of surface exposures and trenches in the area of the historic mining by Southern Silver confirmed both the style and general tenor of historically reported mineralization on the property. Eleven of 86 initial grab and chip samples returned values in excess of 100g/t silver, including 464g/t silver and 15.7% lead and 1.16% zinc from a hand-cobbled sample from the Santa Nino chimney. Additional select chip sampling of historic trenches to the southeast and east of the high-grade mantos and chimneys returned strongly anomalous gold (+1g/t) and copper (0.1% to 0.8%) mineralization, which represent significant bulk-tonnage targets in the skarn immediately adjacent to the main intrusive body.

The Cerro Las Minitas property comprises 17 concessions which total 10,980 hectares and an approximate 25 kilometre lineal strike length. The project lies within the Faja de Plata (Belt of Silver) of north-central Mexico, which is one of the most significant silver producing regions in the world. Current reserves/resources and historic production from this region are in excess of three billion ounces of silver.

Mining has been conducted on the property since colonial times and has identified several types of silver-, lead- and zinc-enriched massive-sulphide pipes, veins and carbonate-replacement deposits (CRDs), as well as mineralized skarns at the margins of a large intrusive body. The Santa Eulalia replacement deposit (45Mt of 310g/t Ag, 7.1% Zn and 8.2% Pb) and the skarn deposit of San Martin (60Mt of 118g/t silver, 0.9% copper and 3.9% zinc) are examples of two major Mexican mines occurring in similar geological environments(2). The mineralized zones at Cerro Las Minitas have been exploited to depths of 300 metres and over widths of 60 metres.

Limited historical drilling on the project by Noranda (not independently verified by Southern Silver) returned numerous intervals of higher grade silver and base metals, including: a 11.45 metre interval (down hole) grading 123g/t silver, 1.55% lead and 7.79% zinc from drill hole HGV-00-02 and a 1.41 metre interval (down hole) grading 529g/t silver, 6.99% lead and 1.27% zinc from drill hole NGV-00-06.

Source: Southern Silver Exploration Corp.

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