37 dead, scores missing in Siberia shopping mall fire

Updated 2018-03-26 09:04:03

Members of the emergency ministry fire service try to put out the fire at the Zimnyaya Vishnya shopping mall in Kemerovo, Russia, on March 25, 2018. At least 37 people were killed in a fire in a shopping mall in south central Russia's Kemerovo city on Sunday, while many others are missing, TASS news agency reported, citing a source with firefighters. (Xinhua/Sputnik)

At least 37 people have died and scores remain missing, including children, after a fire ripped through a busy shopping center in Russia's Kemerovo city in western Siberia on Sunday.

"At this time, we can confirm the death of 37 people in the fire at the Kemerovo shopping center," Tass news agency reported, citing Russia's Investigative Committee.

Another 69 people, including 40 children, are also reportedly missing, according to RIA Novosti agency.

The blaze broke out on an upper floor of the "Winter Cherry" complex, which boasts cinemas, shops and restaurants at around 17:00 local time (1000 GMT).

"According to preliminary information, the roof collapsed in two cinemas," investigators said in a statement.

It was not immediately clear how many people were inside the complex when the fire broke out, but earlier reports said 20 people were rescued from the building and a total of 100 evacuated.

The fire, whose cause was not immediately clear, has been brought under control; but some 300 firefighters and rescue personnel are still working on the scene to locate the missing.

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