Russian Emergency Situations Minister Yevgeny Zinichev has died trying to save someone on the sidelines of Arctic training.

The senior official, aged 55, "tragically died while serving in Norilsk (north) as part of an interdepartmental exercise to protect the arctic zone, while he was saving a person's life," said his ministry to the state-run Tass news agency.

The minister was on the edge of a high cliff with Alexander Melnik, a 63-year-old Russian screenwriter and director, who also died in the crash.

The latter slipped and then fell, and Yevgeny Zinichev "immediately rushed to save him, but he himself lost his life," said the vice-minister of this same ministry, Andrei Gourovich, to the Rossïia channel. -24.

In the close guard of Vladimir Putin

According to internal sources quoted by RBC and Taiga media.

info, the accident would have taken place in the Poutorana nature reserve, a hundred kilometers from Norilsk, famous for its waterfalls and classified as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

"President Putin has expressed his sincere condolences" to the relatives of Yevgeny Zinichev after his "tragic death", the Kremlin announced in a statement.

Yevgeny Zinichev had served in the KGB in the last years of the USSR.

He then spent most of his career in the various Russian security services, in particular that in charge of the close protection of Vladimir Putin, according to a biography published by Russian agencies.

He joined from 2014, as number 2, the counterterrorism department of the powerful Russian security services (FSB).

He was finally appointed Minister of Emergency Situations in May 2018. This ministry, which has nearly 120,000 members, is responsible for responding to natural disasters and ecological accidents.

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