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Nine die in fierce fire in Moscow

A severe fire has been extinguished at the Institute of State and Corporate Management in the South-East of Moscow. According to Russia's Emergencies Ministry, it took around 50 fire engines as well as two helicopters to put out the blaze that killed nine

A rescue operation is underway to find three other students reported missing following the blaze.

Emergency services continued removing debris as they fear more bodies may be under the collapsed areas.

Most of the victims were students attending classes. Those with serious injuries have been taken to hospital.

According to the authorities, it was one of the severest blazes they have seen.

“Emergency services received the first reports of the fire at 1:24 p.m. Moscow time. The fire broke out in a building in the South-East of the city. It's a five-storey block built in 1939. The blaze has been rated as a category five, which is the highest rating,” Evgeny Bobylev, Emergencies Ministry Spokesman, said.

Supposedly, the fire started on the fourth floor of the Institute and then spread rapidly to the fifth. The construction has a number of wooden joists, which also helped the fire to spread. 

The causes of the fire are being investigated.

Moscow city authorities say each family who lost a relative in the blaze will receive 150,000 roubles, and those injured will be awarded 50,000 roubles.