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Two Russian Transport Officials Detained Over Riverboat Tragedy


Stuffed toys, flowers, and other tributes left by people on the shore of the Volga River, near where the "Bulgaria" sank in July.

Stuffed toys, flowers, and other tributes left by people on the shore of the Volga River, near where the "Bulgaria" sank in July.

Russian investigators have detained two transport officials over the sinking of a tourist boat that killed 122 people last month in the country's worst riverboat disaster in decades.

Russia's Federal Investigative Committee said the two unnamed officials at the country's transport safety authority were detained in Kazan, a river port some 800 kilometers southeast of Moscow, on suspicions of negligence.

The "Bulgaria," a riverboat built in 1955, listed to one side and suffered engine failure when it set out from port of Kazan operating without a proper license.

Only 79 of the 201 people aboard survived.

The suspects permitted the company that operated the boat to carry out its business, a sector that is notorious for its safety shortcomings.

If convicted on negligence charges, the officials could be handed prison terms of up to seven years.

Last month, police arrested the boat's tour operator and a local riverboat fleet inspector.

compiled from Reuters reports
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