Moscow and Karelia mourn victims of Syamozero tragedy

 Moscow and Karelia mourn victims of Syamozero tragedy

Moscow Mayor Sergei Sobyanin has declared June 20 a day of mourning in memory of Moscow children who died in a tragic accident Karelia.

"Following the tragedy in Karelia June 20 will be declared a day of mourning in Moscow," he wrote on his Twitter page.

June 20 has been declared a day of mourning in Karelia as well.

According to preliminary investigation results, on June 18, the children in Park-Hotel Syamozero summer camp were out on rafts on a lake despite a storm warning in the Pryazha region. There were 47 children between the ages of 12 and 15 from Moscow and St. Petersburg accompanied by four adult instructors on board. The boats capsized and sank in the storm. As a result, 14 children died.

Russian Investigative Committee’s official representative, Vladimir Markin, said yesterday that one instructor also died, but then corrected this information.

"The investigators have examined the bodies and came to the conclusion that all of them were children born between 2002-2004. There are no adults among those drowned," cited Markin as saying.

After questioning the camp staff, the investigators concluded that the instructors did not take necessary actions to rescue the children.

The Russian Investigative Committee has opened a criminal case under Article 238, part 3 of the Russian Criminal Code (provision of services that fail to meet safety requirements, resulting in the death of two or more persons). A team of investigators was sent to Karelia, the progress of the investigation will be monitored by the head of the Russian Investigative Committee Alexander Bastrykin.

The director of Park Hotel Syamozero Elena Reshetova, her deputy Vadim Vinogradov and instructors Regina Ivanova and Lyudmila Vasilyeva have been detained on suspicion of involvement in the accident.

The head of Russia’s northwestern republic of Karelia, Alexander Khudilaynen, said the families of the victims, will receive compensation in the amount of 1 million rubles ($15000) each.

Twelve children who were injured as a result of the accident on Syamozero Lake in Karelia are in hospitals, the head of the Northwestern Regional Center of the Russian Emergencies Ministry, Igor Panin, said at the meeting held by the head of the Russian Ministry of Emergency Situations, Vladimir Puchkov, in Petrozavodsk.

"Of the 33 children, 12 have been hospitalized. There is no threat to their life," Panin noted. Other 21 children are accommodated in a cadet school and they have received help and medical assistance.

As Vestnik Kavkaza previously reported, the press-secretary of the Russian president, Dmitry Peskov, said that President Putin was informed about the rescue operation in Karelia, and gave instructions on the organization of assistance to the survivors.

"The president was informed through emergency communication channels about the rescue operation after the tragedy in Karelia," he said, adding that the president several times got in touch with Emergencies Minister Vladimir Puchkov, Deputy Prime Minister Olga Golodets and Moscow’s Mayor Sergei Sobyanin.

Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev has offered his condolences to the Russian President Vladimir Putin.

"Dear Vladimir Vladimirovich, I am deeply saddened to learn about the deaths of children, during the storm on the Syamozero Lake in Karelia. On behalf of the people of Azerbaijan and myself, I express my sincere condolences to you, the families and all the people of Russia," the message posted on the website of the Azerbaijani President says.