Videos have started circulating online showing a huge cloud of black smoke rising from a fire in Moscow.
The videos started circulating on social media early Sunday morning, when Russia’s local time was sometime in the afternoon. Information about the fire was scant, as of about 6pm local time, but local reports indicated it broke out in an industrial warehouse in Ramenskoye, a town in the southeastern part of the Moscow metropolitan region, where officials speculated that welding may have been the initial cause.
Anton Gerashchenko, advisor to Ukraine’s Minister of Internal Affairs, wrote in a message to X, the platform formerly known as Twitter: “Russian media reported a major fire in an (alleged) industrial warehouse in the Moscow region.” In the post, he also shared a video showing huge plumes of black smoke in the distance, with hints of flames near the ground.
“It also seems to be the rule: Something is burning in Moscow,” Kyiv Independent correspondent Jason Jay Smart wrote in his X post. “This time, the fire appears to have started near the industrial area known as the Polygon.”
The video shared by Smart was from a distance, showing smoke spreading across the city.
Authorities said that “the fire in Ramenskoye, Moscow region, may have been caused by welding,” Nexta, a prominent Eastern European news outlet, wrote in another post, along with a video taken next to the fire itself, with first responders visible. in the scene.
Newsweek I reached out to Russian officials via email for comment.
According to reports received from several Russian news outlets, quoting Reuters, on Sunday, that the fire broke out in a warehouse containing fertilizers, and was extinguished after it reached a size of about 2,700 square meters. The state-run Russian News Agency, citing information from the Moscow District Prosecutor’s Office, echoed other reports that the initial cause of the fire was suspected to have been a violation of fire safety rules for welding.
While the cause of the fire, for now, appears to have been accidental, it comes at a time when drone strikes from Ukrainian forces are becoming increasingly common in the Russian capital. On August 1, Russian officials blamed the country for a drone attack that targeted a tower in Moscow’s financial district. The same building was targeted by another drone strike two days ago. In late July, two drone strikes carried out by Ukraine targeted buildings housing defense and cyber security centres. However, Ukraine does not usually take responsibility for attacks inside Russian territory, which is a contentious topic among Ukraine’s allies.
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