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Russia accused or cover-up in deadly submarine fire: "Is this normal?"

A fter the Russian government said that one of its submarines caught four killing 14 sailors, commentators in Russia are drawing comparisons to the Soviet Union's reaction to the Chernobyl nuclear disaster.

Despite the incident reportedly occurring Monday, news of the deaths was not released to the public until late Tuesday, and little details were revealed, leading in Russia to question what exactly is going on given the lack of available information.

Russian President Vladimir Putin pulled out of an event Tuesday to meet with his defense minister over the incident. He directed the minister, Sergei Shoigu, to travel to the Russian Northern Fleet's base in Severomorsk on the Barents Sea to investigate the accident. But since then, there has been little information about the circumstances of how many sailors were onboard.

In addition, the government has not confirmed the type of vessel, despite reports that it involved Russia's most secretive submarine the AS-1

2, a nuclear-powered vessel designed for deep-water operations nicknamed the "Losharik." [19659002] “Absolutely nothing is known at the moment: who, what … I don't understand one thing: Why did a day go by and only then did they make the statement about the deceased?” Ekho Moskvy radio station anchor Yevgeny Buntman wondered. “Why don't we know their names? Is this normal? ”


The Bell, a news site that often criticizes the Russian government, compared the incident to the initial lack of public information following the 1986 meltdown at the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant in Ukraine.

"Nearly a day without information about the accident in a nuclear facility and the need to look out for Norwegian statements about the level of radiation should have given a shudder to those who remember the Chernobyl nuclear power station," the Bell wrote.

Norwegian authorities have said that they have detected a sprain in the area of ​​the Barents Sea and the assertion that Russia was the result of a gas explosion, and claim Moscow has vehemently denied.

"There were no notifications sent to the Norwegian side regarding the Russian science research deep water apparatus," the Russian defense ministry said in a statement.

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