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Deadly Blast Hits Belarus Subway

April 11, 2011
An explosion has hit a metro station in the center of the Belarusian capital, Minsk, reportedly causing several fatalities and injuring more than a dozen.

The blast occurred at the Oktyabrskaya metro station in downtown, not far from President Alyaksandr Lukashenka's offices.

A woman who was entering the metro when she heard the explosion, Valyantsina Aksak, told RFE/RL's Belarus Service correspondent on the scene that she saw fire after the explosion and the lights went out in the station.

She said she saw "corpses" and people trying to help victims whose clothes were on fire.

At least 12 fire engines and 10 ambulances are on the scene, according to RFE/RL's Russian Service.

State news agency Belta, quoting its own correspondent at the scene, said several people had been killed.

The Emergencies Ministry confirmed an explosion had occurred but did not give any details about the cause of the blast or the number of casualties.

A man who gave only his first name, Henadz, told RFE/RL that he was unsure whether the explosion had struck a train or the platform.

Another woman, Alena Pankratava, told RFE/RL that she only saw victims with minor injuries.

compiled from agency reports


Copyright (c) 2011. RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave., N.W. Washington DC 20036.

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