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Russian Boat Captain Pleads Guilty After Deadly Collision

Yury Ratko (right) after a session of Omsk's Leninsky District Court on August 19
The captain of a ship that collided with a barge on a Russian river, killing six passengers and injuring almost 50, has pleaded guilty to negligence.

The 51-year-old captain, Yury Ratko, confessed in court on August 19 that he had consumed alcohol a day before the tragedy, in breach of regulations.

He was immediately arrested and sent to a pretrial detention center.

The accident happened on August 17 on the Irtysh River, near the city of Omsk in western Siberia.

The passenger ship was an express ferry to a local monastery popular with Orthodox Christians from Siberia and northern regions of neighboring Kazakhstan.

Local officials in Omsk Oblast announced that August 21 would be a day of mourning.

Based on reporting by Interfax and ITAR-TASS