Russian National Guard line the streets of St Petersburg as the coffins of elite 'hydronauts' arrive

Mail Online | 7/6/2019 | Alisha Buaya;Will Stewart In Moscow for MailOnline
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The Russian National Guard lined the streets of St Petersburg as the coffins of 14 elite officers who were killed in a fire on board a nuclear powered submarine made their way through the city.

A convoy of minibuses carrying the coffins of the officers, known as 'hydronauts', made its way to private funerals for close friends, family and their comrades at Serafimovskoye cemetery on Saturday.

Officers - Members - Secret - Underwater - Intelligence

The officers, were members of a top secret underwater intelligence service called the deep-sea Spetsnaz, died after a fire broke on board the AS-12 nicknamed Losharik on July 1 in the Barents Sea.

There was a heavy security, with military police standing outside the cemetery gates as navy serviceman and mourners were seen making their way to the memorial service carrying floral arrangements.

Scenes - Cemetery - Officers

There was also emotional scenes outside the cemetery as grieving officers comforted each other.

Moscow has said the crew was studying the sea floor and that the details of the tragedy are a 'state secret'.

Media - Ship - Mini-submarine

But Russian media have reported that the ship was a top-secret nuclear-powered mini-submarine.

The defence ministry confirmed the vessel was nuclear-powered for the first time on Friday.

Service - Media - Security - Police - Cemetery

The service, which was closed off to the media, was protected under heavy security, with military police standing outside the cemetery gates.

'You have to understand that the identities of most of the people who gathered here are secret and their faces cannot be shown,' a representative of the defence ministry told AFP.

Salute - Anthem - Heard

Later, there was a military salute and the Russian national anthem heard.

Dmitry Razmyslov, 38, attended the funeral to pay his respects to one of the seamen - Dmitry Solovyev - with whom he studied at a military academy in the late 1980s.

Defence - Ministry - Solovyev - Accident

The Russian defence ministry said Solovyev acted heroically during the accident, evacuating a civilian and closing the...
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