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Vladimir Putin was dealt yet another huge blow as an explosion rocked a military-industrial plant in Russia.
The site is one of Russia’s largest producers of explosives as well as of gunpowder for small arms, according to the Ukrainska Pravda.
Clips and pictures recorded on Tuesday show thick smoke rising from the plant located in Solikamsk, in the Ural region of Perm Krai.
Russian news agencies were quick to claim the blast didn’t present a threat to the local population and that no casualties had resulted from it.
State-owned domestic news agency Ria Novosti reported the Ministry of the Russian Federation for Civil Defence, Emergency Situations and Elimination of Consequences of Natural Disasters claimed the plant continued to operate as normal after the blast.
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Citing a representative at the plant, Ria added that the explosion occurred at a time when nobody was in the building.
Another state-owned Russian news agency, Tass, cited the local Ministry of Territorial Security as it spoke about the damages reported at the site.
The local authority said: “According to operational information, windows and doors were broken, the workshop is operating in automated mode, there are no casualties, there is no threat to the population.”
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The news agency added 44 firefighters and 11 pieces of equipment were deployed to the area affected by the explosion.
A plant representative also told Tass the circumstances of the incident were “being clarified”.
The plant is run by Russian state-owned defence conglomerate Rostec which, founded 15 years ago, is currently headed by Sergey Chemezov.
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Appointed by Putin, Mr Chemezov was slapped with sanctions by the UK and the EU in relation to the 2014 Russo-Ukrainian conflict. He was also barred from entering the US by the Obama administration following Russia’s illegal annexation of Crimea.
It isn’t yet clear whether the blast at the Ural plant was the result of an accident or an attack and how much of an impact it could have on the supply of weapons and explosives to Ukraine-based Russian troops.
Ukraine hasn’t commented on the incident.
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