Massive explosion at a military munitions disposal site in Russia’s Orenburg region© Photo Russian Interior Ministry in the Orenburg region
ORENBURG, July 15 (RIA Novosti) - An army conscript was found guilty on Monday of causing a massive explosion at a military munitions disposal site in Russia's Urals region last year and fined 30,000 ($909), a military court representative told RIA Novosti.
More than 4,000 tons of ammunition exploded at the disposal site last October near Orenburg, injuring an officer, forcing the temporary evacuation of residents from nearby villages and causing an estimated 237 million rubles worth of damage.
Private Alexander Kasatkin confessed to smoking as munitions were being unloaded from trains on October 9, 2012, in violation of safety regulations. He dropped a cigarette butt on the ground without making sure that it was extinguished, investigators said.
The Defense Ministry and the Orenburg district administration may sue for damages, the court representative said.
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If attempts to drag Russia into a direct military conflict in Ukraine are successful, it would be a catastrophe for Russia comparable to the 1979-1989 Afghan war. There is no direct evidence that the US is trying to bring about a second Afghan war, but indirect evidence abounds.