Nagorno-Karabakh fuel depot blast toll jumps to 170

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The toll from an explosion at a fuel depot in Nagorno-Karabakh that was thronged with Armenians fleeing an Azerbaijani military offensive has jumped to 170 people, authorities in the region announced Friday.

The blast occurred days after the breakaway region’s separatist fighters announced they would disarm and integrate with Azerbaijan, spurring an exodus of thousands of ethnic Armenians.

“To date, a total of 170 remains... have been found in the same area and handed over to the forensic medical examination bureau,” separatist authorities said in a statement on social media.

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Authorities had earlier said the blast claimed the lives of 68 people and wounded another 200. They said Monday that remains would be transferred to Armenia for identification.

The fireball erupted as refugees were stocking up on fuel for the long drive along the lone mountain road leading to Armenia.

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