Jan 22, 2019 08:41 Asia/Tehran

Two ships have caught fire in the Kerch Strait separating Crimea from mainland Russia after one of them was apparently rocked by an explosion.

Iran Press/Europe: At least 11 sailors have died and 14 have been rescued after two ships caught fire in the Kerch Strait near Crimea, Russia’s transport ministry said on Monday.

Rescue operation still underway and Russian rescuers are trying to reach sailors who jumped overboard. Fourteen people have so far been rescued, RT reported.

Clouds of black smoke can be seen billowing over a vessel engulfed by a blaze on YouTube footage, which shows the scene of the incident. Another ship can be seen floating nearby.

Some three dozen sailors managed to escape the burning ships by jumping off the vessels. Nine sailors are still listed as missing, a spokesperson for the Maritime Agency told TASS.

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