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Underwater current hampers search for Mi-8 helicopter missing off Spitzbergen

October 27, 9:23 UTC+3 MOSCOW

The Mi-8 helicopter with eight Russians onboard went missing on Thursday afternoon

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MOSCOW, October 27. /TASS/. Strong underwater currents and bad weather are hampering a search effort for the Russian Mi-8 helicopter that has gone missing off the island of Spitzbergen, the Emergencies Ministry told TASS on Friday.

The search and rescue services are working round-the-clock in the waters of the Greenland Sea and the coastline. The effort involves two helicopters, sea vessels and ships of Norway’s coast guard.

"The works are complicated by the weather conditions, the underwater current and low water temperature," the ministry said.

The divers of the Tsentrospas rescue unit and the Leader center for carrying out rescue operations with special equipment will be setting off to the scene.

The Mi-8 helicopter with eight Russians onboard went missing on Thursday afternoon near the Russian mining village of Barentsburg on the Spitsbergen. The rescue coordination center of Northern Norway told TASS the effort would be conducted even if there was a chance "in theory" to find people alive.

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