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Infant rescued 35 hours after Russian apartment collapse

Infant rescued 35 hours after Russian apartment collapse
A rescuer carries a baby boy found alive amid the debris of a collapsed apartment building in Magnitogorsk, Russia. The child's recovery prospects are unclear. (Russian Emergency Situations Ministry)

Russian rescuers Tuesday pulled an infant boy alive from the rubble of an apartment building about 35 hours after a collapse that killed at least seven people and left dozens missing.

They found the baby after hearing cries amid the debris. A section of the 10-story building in the southern Ural Mountain city of Magnitogorsk collapsed Monday after an explosion believed to have been triggered by a natural gas leak.

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The child, who officials initially said was a girl, was seriously injured and his recovery prospects were unclear.

The boy’s mother survived the collapse and went to a hospital to identify him, the state news agency Tass reported, citing the regional emergencies ministry. The child will be flown to Moscow for further treatment, Tass said.

The regional emergency ministry said earlier Tuesday that 37 residents of the building had not been accounted for. Hopes of finding survivors were dimmed by the harsh cold: Temperatures overnight were around 0 degrees Fahrenheit.

“The child was saved because it was in a crib and wrapped warmly,” the region’s governor, Boris Dubrovsky, was quoted as saying by the Interfax news agency.

Rescue crews temporarily halted their search while workers tried to stabilize sections of the building in danger of collapse.

Five people were hospitalized after the building collapse in the city about 870 miles southeast of Moscow, the emergencies ministry said.

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