Monkey kills six-week-old baby asleep in pushchair in Crimea

The animal had escaped from a private zoo nearby

A baby has reportedly been killed by a monkey that escaped from a small private zoo in the Crimean city of Sevastopol.

Russia’s Interior Ministry said the primate attacked a month-and-a-half-old infant who was sleeping in a pushchair in a nearby garden on Thursday, according to Radio Free Europe Radio Liberty.

The child’s parents were unable to save the baby.

Official said the 65-year-old owner of the zoo had been cleaning the monkey’s cage when it fled and scaled a neighbouring fence.

The creature was subsequently recaptured and charges against the owner are reportedly pending.

Crimea was annexed by Vladimir Putin’s Russia in March in an ongoing dispute over the territory.

Crimea had been part of Russia since the 18th century until Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev transferred it to Ukraine in 1954. Both Russians and Crimea's majority ethnic Russian population see annexation as correcting a historic insult.

However, the United Nations continues to view Crimea as part of Ukraine.