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Blast at Belarus metro station kills several people

By Reuters
Monday, April 11, 2011 13:08 EDT
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MINSK (Reuters) – A blast hit a metro station in the center of the Belarusian capital Minsk on Monday and police said some people had been killed.

The state news agency BelTA said the blast occurred at 5.55 p.m. (11:55 a.m. ET) at the metro station Oktyabrskaya on a square of the same name about 100 meters (yards) from the administration building of President Alexander Lukashenko.

There was no indication of what caused the explosion.

Asked by a Reuters correspondent if there were dead, a police spokesman said: “Yes, there are. We don’t yet know the exact number.”

A 52-year-old man said a train was coming into the station when the blast occurred on the platform.

“The doors (of the train) opened and then there was an explosion,” said the man who gave his name only as Igor. “I saw people lying on the floor without moving. There was a lot of blood.”

Reuters correspondent Andrei Makhovsky went to the scene and saw one dead person lying outside the station covered in sheeting.

Interfax news agency, reporting from Minsk, quoted an eyewitness as saying he had seen two dead bodies. The agency quoted an ambulance service spokesman as saying “very many” people had been injured.

First-aid workers were helping injured people at the scene, BelTA said.

(Reporting by Andrei Makhovsky; Writing by Richard Balmforth and Olzhas Auyezov, editing by Tim Pearce)

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