A fire that tore through a neighborhood whose residents have reportedly received threats has killed at one person, authorities say.
The Investigative Committee said the body of a man was found in the ruins of his home on August 22 by workers who were clearing debris from the blaze that damaged or destroyed 118 buildings in the southern city of Rostov-on-Don.
The Emergency Situations Ministry said on August 22 that the blaze, which broke out in a residential area in the center of the city on the afternoon of August 21, was extinguished shortly before 6 a.m. on August 22.
Local officials said 58 people were injured in the fire, nine of whom remained in hospitals.
Regional police have launched an investigation into the fire, which the Emergency Situations Ministry said may have started on a garbage dump on private property and spread quickly in windy weather.
The civic movement Open Russia has reported that the fire affected an area where local authorities plan to build a hotel that would be used during the 2018 World Cup soccer tournament, which Russia is hosting.
Open Russia has quoted residents as saying that men who introduced themselves as representatives of construction companies had tried to get them to leave the area, offering them financial compensation that was much lower than the cost of land in the city center or threatening to burn their houses down if they refused to accept their conditions.
Several other fires have erupted in the neighborhood in recent months, prompting suspicions of arson.