Fire at Moscow market kills 17 migrant workers
Tuesday 03 April 2012
Seventeen migrant workers were killed in a fire today in a market warehouse on Moscow's outskirts where they had been living, Russian emergency officials and media said.
Most of the victims were from Tajikistan and the others may have also come from ex-Soviet republics, state media said. The pre-dawn blaze highlighted the dangerous conditions many labour migrants endure in Russia.
"The space was not meant for people to live in," emergency official Sergei Gorbunov told state-run news agency RIA.
The metal-sided two-storey building was used as a storage warehouse at a construction materials market, said Gorbunov, deputy chief of the Emergency Situations department in Moscow's southwestern district. The victims had been living in makeshift quarters in the rear of the building, he said.
"Why people were living there and what relationship they had with the market will be established by the investigation," he added.
Authorities have opened a criminal investigation on suspicion of fatal negligence of fire safety rules.
It was the deadliest fire in the Russian capital since a December 2006 blaze killed 46 patients at a hospital for people with drug dependency problems, Interfax reported.
Millions of migrants from poor former Soviet republics such as Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan and Moldova work on construction sites or do menial jobs in Russia.
Many of them are in Russia illegally, work in or around Moscow and live where they work or in cramped spaces rented from employers.
Money that Tajik migrants send home accounts for nearly 40 per cent of the impoverished nation's $6 billion economy.
Death rates from fires are far higher in Russia than in Western nations. In 2010, fires killed nearly 13,000 people in Russia and roughly 3,000 in the United States, whose population is more than twice as large as Russia's 143 million, according to Russian and US government statistics.
- 1 Frank Lampard's face drops when Holly Willoughby introduces him as a 'Man City legend'
- 2 'Do not give them a reason': Baltimore man divides police and rioters in hope of avoiding violence
- 3 X Factor in crisis as numbers of people auditioning plummets
- 4 Baltimore riots: Furious mother marches her son home live on TV
- 5 General Election 2015: Stephen Hawking says he will vote Labour
General Election 2015: Tories sack candidate who said she would never support 'the Jew' Ed Miliband
Bali Nine executions: Indonesia confirms killings of Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran will go ahead
The four utterly contradictory polls that tell the story of this election and why it is pointless trying to predict the outcome
General Election 2015: Prospect of Labour-SNP coalition makes one in four voters less likely to support Ed Miliband, says survey
Baltimore riots: Furious mother marches her son home live on TV
General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
The sickening truth about food banks that the Tories don't want you to know
Aaron and Melissa Klein: Oregon anti-gay bakers ordered to pay $135,000 after refusing to make cake for same-sex wedding
EU exit would hit UK economy much harder than neighbouring countries, study finds
Andrew Lloyd Webber: Phantom of the Opera writer mocked after issuing a warning about Ed Miliband and Nicola Sturgeon
General election 2015: Labour will toughen hate crimes legislation surrounding Islamophobia
£40000 - £48000 per annum + 10% bonus & benefits: Ashdown Group: Systems Engin...
£20000 - £24000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an opportunity to join ...
£11 per hour: Recruitment Genius: To join a team working with a female in her ...
£16000 - £17000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company has over 30 years ...