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    WATER PARK TRAGEDY WASN'T CAUSED BY TERRORIST ACT, DEPUTY MUNICIPAL PROSECUTOR SAYS

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    MOSCOW, FEBRUARY 17, 2004, /RIA-NOVOSTI CORRESPONDENT/ -- Deputy municipal prosecutor Vladimir Yudin denied mass-media rumors to the effect that the latest water-park tragedy was caused by a terrorist act.

    We don't have any information on this score, Yudin told RIA-NOVOSTI, adding that investigators also knew nothing about this.

    A roof caved in at the Transvaal Park water complex in south-west Moscow's Yasenevo district February 14. According to official statistics, 25 people, i.e. 12 men, 6 women and 7 children, were killed as a result. Rescue workers removed 24 bodies from the rubble; and another person died in hospital. All dead persons were subsequently identified.

    More than 100 people were either rushed to hospitals or requested medical aid on their own. 64 injured persons, that is 16 men, 24 women and 24 children, are now staying at local hospitals. Five persons are listed in extremely serious condition; the condition of another 13 persons is serious, reports the municipal health-care department. 32 and 18 people are reported in stable condition and satisfactory condition, respectively.

    Authorities say 426 visitors were staying inside at the time of the disaster.

    Search-and-rescue operations have already stopped because there is no longer chance of finding any survivors under the rubble. Workers have now started demolishing part of the glass-domed roof, which is still hanging precariously. Moreover, heavy-duty equipment is now being used to clear up the rubble.

    The municipal prosecutor's office has instituted criminal proceedings in line with the Criminal Code's article 109 part two (manslaughter).

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