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Russian nuclear sub fire kills 2

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MOSCOW, Russia (CNN) -- Two crewmembers were killed when a fire broke out aboard a nuclear submarine in Russia's Northern Fleet, Russian Defense Ministry officials told CNN.

The incident occurred late Wednesday as the submarine was anchored about 50 kilometers (30 miles) north of Murmansk, near the Finnish border in the Barents Sea. Interfax news agency said there was no threat of a radiation leak.

"The fire aboard the sub was put out at about midnight. It had broken out in the electric engineering section," a Northern Fleet spokesman said, according to Interfax.

"The emergency shutout system of the nuclear propulsion plant was activated. There is no nuclear pollution threat."

According to the Defense Ministry, rescue officials are on the scene and are towing the submarine back to the naval base at the port of Vedyayevo.

The submarine, the St Daniel of Moscow, was a Viktor class attack submarine which was likely carrying torpedoes but not nuclear weapons, defense experts told Reuters.

It entered service in 1990, making it one of the fleet's more modern submarines.

Russia's Northern Fleet has been dogged by accidents. The worst was when the Kursk submarine sank in the Barents Sea six years ago, killing all 118 people on board.

Last year, the British navy helped rescue the crew of a Russian navy mini-submarine stranded 200 meters below the surface in the Pacific with dwindling air supplies.

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