A fire engulfed an aviation school on Sunday, just days after a munitions factory in the Russian city of Perm caught fire amid the country’s ongoing invasion of Ukraine.
Russia has seen several mysterious fires break out in various buildings, warehouses and other locations since April, raising some concerns that Ukraine may be to blame, although leaders have not claimed responsibility.
Sunday’s fire in Perm, a city of more than a million people located more than 700 miles from Moscow near the Ural Mountains, appeared to start at a construction site where a school is being built in the city center.
Videos posted to social media showed massive plumes of smoke billowing into the air. According to a translated local news report on Telegram, it apparently started when a heater on the construction site caught fire. Nobody suffered any injuries or deaths.
The fire left the city center in a cloud of smoke, which the report said could be seen across the Kama River. More specific details of how the heater caught fire were not immediately clear early Sunday afternoon.
Visegrád 24, a news outlet that summarizes news from several Eastern European countries, speculated on the cause of the fire on Twitter, writing that there had been “too many fires lately for it to be a coincidence”.
However, neither Ukrainian nor Russian officials said the fire was caused by Ukrainian sabotage. news week both the Ukrainian and Russian defense ministries have been asked for comments.
Just days earlier, a fire at a munitions factory in the city had killed two people.
An explosion hit the FKP Perm Powder Plant, which produces gunpowder, and started a fire that also injured several people. Authorities blamed the fire on a “product” that “caught on fire” but was still under investigation.
Since the beginning of last month there have been several more fires across Russia. Ukraine has not claimed responsibility for the fires and the causes are being investigated by Russian officials. However, some Western officials have said it is “perfectly legitimate” for the fires to be carried out by Ukraine.
Other fires included fires at an oil depot in Belgorod, a research center in Tver, a fuel depot in Bryansk, and explosions on the streets of the capital Moscow.
Many have speculated that the fires may have been deliberately set by Ukrainians or their supporters in Russia. Oleksei Arestovych, an adviser to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, offered only a vague explanation That new York Times late last month, when asked about Ukrainian sabotage, he said: “We don’t confirm and we don’t deny.”