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6 students dead, 48 injured in fire in southeast Moscow - 2

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MOSCOW, October 2 (RIA Novosti) - A total of 6 students died and 48 were injured in a fire that broke out in a university in southeast Moscow, a Russian emergencies ministry spokesman said Tuesday.

"The victims are in city hospitals, and the state of health of two of them is reported as critical, while another 18 are in a serious condition," the spokesman said.

The fire occurred while the 19-year-old students at the Institute of Governmental and Corporative Management were having classes. A total of 150 students and teachers were evacuated from the five-story building, the spokesman said.

Fifty firefighting units and two firefighting helicopters were engaged in combating the fire, which, according to preliminary information, started on the fourth floor and later spread to the fifth.

The first firefighting units arrived at the scene three minutes after being informed of the blaze to see most of the building already engulfed in flames, the spokesman added.

Over the last few years, Russia has seen a number of deadly blazes at schools, universities, hospitals and other public places.

In 2003, over 40 foreign students were killed and 156 injured following a mysterious fire in the student halls at the Peoples' Friendship University of Russia in southwest Moscow.

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