updateA Russian fighter jet has crashed near an apartment building in Yeysk, Russia, not far from Russian-occupied Ukraine on the other side of the Sea of Azov. The death toll has now risen to thirteen. Three children are among the victims, according to the Russian news agency RIA Novosti.
Rescuers are said to have pulled 68 people alive from the rubble, 19 of whom have been hospitalized. The crew of the fighter jet was able to save themselves, Russian media reported. Some people would have died because they would have jumped from the burning apartment. Social media includes images of a large fireball and the affected housing complex.
The crashed plane is a Su-34 fighter-bomber, according to the Russian Ministry of Defense. It crashed during a training flight. One of the two engines should have burned after take-off. According to the ministry, the plane’s fuel caught fire at the crash site and caused a large explosion. The two pilots must have brought themselves to safety with their ejection seats.
Pictures circulating on social media show a raging fire in the apartment. The emergency services report that the nine-storey building is on fire. About six hundred people live there. The fire extends over an area of 2,000 square meters, according to previous information from the Ministry of Emergency Situations.
The governor of the Krasnodar region, to which Yejsk belongs, said “all fire and rescue units from the region” have been deployed. According to Veniamin Kondratjev, seventeen apartments in the residential building were affected by the fire.
President Vladimir Putin has been informed of the crash. According to Russian state news agencies, he ordered the governor, Emergency Situations Minister Alexander Kurenkov and Health Minister Mikhail Murashko to go to the scene.
The Russian Investigative Committee, which conducts the main criminal investigations, has announced that it has launched a “criminal investigation”
Yejsk is located on the Taganrog Bay and the Sea of Azov, about 60 kilometers as the crow flies from the Ukrainian port city of Mariupol.
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