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BEIJING, August 16. /TASS/. The death toll in major explosions at China’s northern port city of Tianjin has reached 112 people, Chinese media reported on Sunday.
Last night, rescuers found 10 more bodies of those killed in powerful blasts that struck the city on Wednesday. Ninety-five people are still missing, including 85 firefighters, the media said.
A powerful explosion rocked a warehouse storing chemical goods around midnight on August 12. Another major explosion followed when firefighters were working at the scene. Eyewitnesses say that buildings within a 2km radius had windows blown out, while more than 5,000 cars burned down. The causes of the accident have not been identified yet.
A total of 1,000 firefighters are extinguishing fire in Tianjin. More than 1,500 armed policemen were sent to the scene to provide assistance.
A full-scale search and rescue operation is underway at the sight of the explosion. China’s Ministry of Environmental Protection said that cyanide and other hazardous highly toxic chemicals were found at sight of the explosion. According the ministry, a level of cyanide exceeded the norm by eight times in one of drain pipes in the emergency area.
On Thursday, Russian President Vladimir Putin sent a telegram to Chinese President Xi Jinping, expressing condolences over the tragedy in Tianjin. Russian Emergencies Minister Vladimir Puchkov offered assistance to China’s social security minister in dealing with the aftermath of the explosions.