MOSCOW — Flames engulfed one of Moscow's most famous historical landmarks late Sunday as the belltower of the Novodevichy Convent caught fire.
The fire broke out on the scaffolding around the tower, which has been closed for repairs since late last year. Emergency services told Russian state media that the cause of the fire was as yet unclear.
Alexander Gavrilov, deputy head of the Moscow fire department, said that the belltower itself was mostly unharmed, the Interfax news agency reported.
First built in 1520, the convent complex is a UNESCO World Heritage site and one of Russia's most famous landmarks.
The cemetery adjoining the monastery is one of Moscow's most sought-after burial places.
Max Seddon is a correspondent for BuzzFeed World based in Berlin. He has reported from Russia, Ukraine, Azerbaijan and across the ex-Soviet Union and Europe. His secure PGP fingerprint is 6642 80FB 4059 E3F7 BEBE 94A5 242A E424 92E0 7B71
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