3 Killed in Magnitogorsk Minibus Blast After Deadly Apartment Explosion

Ilya Moskovets / TASS

At least three people were killed in a minibus explosion Tuesday in the industrial city of Magnitogorsk, where more than a dozen residents have died in an apartment block blast.

Nineteen people are dead and dozens are still missing after a 10-story building partially collapsed on Monday in the Urals city some 1,700 kilometers east of Moscow. Authorities say a gas leak is suspected of causing the blast.

Three people there have also died after a minibus caught on fire not far from the apartment block, Interfax cited the Chelyabinsk region governor’s office as saying. Regional police told the news agency that “faulty gas equipment” inside the vehicle caused the deadly explosion.

Following anonymously sourced reports suggesting both explosions may have been acts of terrorism, Russia’s Investigative Committee said no traces of explosives have been found in the rubble. Footage shared by local media showed a ball of fire followed by sounds of explosives or firearms being discharged.

President Vladimir Putin visited the site of the apartment blast tragedy on Monday. Wednesday has been declared a day of mourning in Magnitogorsk.

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