Six people were pronounced dead on Thursday after a fire broke out at the Russian Aerospace Defense Research Institute building in Tver. Local officials said that the institute, which is responsible for the development of Russian air defense systems, can be seen in video footage engulfed in black smoke.
TASS reported that at least 30 people were injured.
The fire forced employees to jump out of the windows of the six-story building.
What caused the fire?
According to the official TASS news agency, the fire was caused by faulty electrical wiring.
It is believed that the fire has started on the second floor and destroyed 1,000 square meters of the building.
The second floor of the building was covered with wooden floors and plastic panels, creating toxic smoke that prevented people from evacuating.
A spokesperson for the ambulance service mentioned that “some of the victims inhaled smoke” and that others suffered bruises and other injuries after jumping out of windows.
The research institute would have helped develop the Iskander anti-aircraft systems currently used by the Russian military in Ukraine.
Although it is not uncommon for buildings to be affected by unexpected and accidental fires in Russia, the nature of the work carried out in the building raises questions about whether local authorities are telling the truth about the origins of the fire. . Russian buildings often catch fire due to aging infrastructure and lack of enforcement of safety legislation in many residential and commercial buildings.
When the Moskva sunk 14 April, Russia initially blamed the damage on an accidental fire causing an explosion of ammunition. Ukraine, however, took credit for the sinking, explaining how its military hit the flagship with two Neptune missiles.
There is so far no evidence available to Western media or intelligence officials to suggest that the fire at the Aerospace Defense Research Institute building was started on purpose, it’s hard to really know what happening in Russia.
Relief operations were still in progress since Thursday evening and an investigation is ongoing.
Jack Buckby is a British author, counter-extremism researcher and journalist based in New York. Reporting from the UK, Europe and the US, it strives to analyze and understand left and right radicalisation, and reports on Western government approaches to pressing issues of today. His books and research papers explore these themes and offer pragmatic solutions to our increasingly polarized society.