Russian authorities have told people in a village near the site of a deadly missile explosion involving a nuclear power test to “leave the territory”, after the accident triggered a spike in radiation.
CNN reports “The Kremlin broke its silence Tuesday on the apparent explosion of a nuclear-powered cruise missile during a test, saying that accidents “happen” but that Russia remained “far ahead” in the development of advanced weaponry.”
A spokesperson said that only experts could speak with authority on such matters, but added: “Accidents, unfortunately, happen. They are tragedies. But in this particular case, it is important for us to remember those heroes who lost their lives in this accident.”
American intelligence officials have indicated that they believe an explosion in northern Russia last week may have been related to work on a nuclear-powered cruise missile, The New York Times reported on Monday.
Russia has yet to say what its engineers were working on at the time of the blast.
A number of Russian nuclear scientists were buried on Monday after they were killed in an explosion last week. Rosatom State Atomic Energy Corp., Russia’s state nuclear agency, said they were testing a nuclear-powered engine at the time the blast occurred, BBC reported. BBC reported that the fatalities were 5. Times of Israel said that the total were 7
“The rocket tests were carried out on the offshore platform,” Rosatom said in a statement over the weekend, according to Foreign Policy magazine. “After the tests were completed, the rocket fuel ignited, followed by detonation. After the explosion, several employees were thrown into the sea.”
Thursday’s explosion at the Nenoksa Missile Test Site near Severodvinsk released radiation into the atmosphere, killing at least seven people and fueling speculation regarding Russia’s pursuit of a weapons technology examined and abandoned by Washington during the height of the Cold War.
Via BBC / Military Insider / Times of Israel / The Independent (UK)