No Filipino casualty in Russia mall fire: DFA

MANILA The Philippine Embassy in Moscow said no Filipino was reported among the casualties in a shopping mall fire in Western Siberia that killed 56 on Sunday (Russian time), based on a list released by local authorities as of March 26.

Philippine Ambassador to Moscow Carlos Sorreta said the Embassy is coordinating with Russian authorities for official updates.

The Embassy is still checking though for updates if there is any Filipino among the dead and missing in the incident.

The Philippine government, through the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA), on Monday extended its sympathies to the Russian Federation over the deadly blaze.

We extend our condolences to the government and people of the Russian Federation over the deaths resulting from the fire at the Winter Cherry Shopping Center in Kemerovo, DFA Secretary Alan Peter Cayetano said in a statement.

Our thoughts and prayers go to the families of those who perished in this tragedy, he added, as he expressed hopes that the casualty rate would no longer rise.

Sorreta said about 1,000 of the 8,000 Filipinos in Russia are in Siberia.

In his report to the DFA, Sorreta said the fire, which is considered to be one the deadliest in Russia in recent years, razed the upper floors of the shopping center in Kemerovo, some 3,600 kilometers from Moscow, where a movie theater and a children's play center were located.

He said Russian authorities have recovered at least 56 bodies, many of them children, from the fire scene and are searching for dozens who remain unaccounted for.

Source: Philippine News Agency

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