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Bus fire kills 52 Uzbek citizens on Kazakhstan migrant route

A bus fire in Kazakhstan has killed 52 people, all citizens of neighbouring Uzbekistan.

The bus caught fire at around 10.30am local time on a road frequently used by migrant workers travelling to Samara, in Russia, and Shymkent in the south of Kazakhstan near the Uzbek border.

Those using the route, which runs for more than 1,350 miles, often travel to take up work in construction sites in southern Russia.

Only five people managed to escape the blaze, the Kazakh interior ministry said in a statement.

Bus fire kills 52 Uzbeks travelling in Kazakhstan
The bus was travelling on a route often used by migrant workers

It is not known what caused the fire or which direction the bus was travelling.

In footage posted online the bus can be seen positioned diagonally across a highway on a snow covered steppe, engulfed in flames and black smoke.

Uzbekistan’s foreign ministry said embassy staff were on the way to the area.

Last October, a Kazakh operated bus became stuck on railway tracks in Russia and was hit by a train, killing 17 of the 50 people on board.

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