94 killed in Russian cafe blast | The Australian Ninety-four people were killed overnight when a blast hit a cafe in the Russian Ural city of Perm, as officials ruled out the possibility of a terrorist attack. "Ninety-four people were killed and 139 injured'' in the blast and the ensuing fire, a regional emergency situations ministry spokesman in Perm told AFP by telephone. Earlier, the Perm region's public security minister Igor Orlov said, speaking at the scene of the accident, that 90 people were killed and their bodies were being moved out. The blast hit the cafe as over 200 people, mostly the cafe's employees and their families, were partying inside to celebrate the bar's eighth anniversary, local police said as quoted by ITAR-TASS, suggesting that the explosion was caused by a fireworks rocket gone wrong. A police source told RIA Novosti that most victims succumbed to carbon monoxide poisoning in the crush as the panicked crowd rushed to escape. Local officials ruled out the possibility that the blast was due to a terrorist act, Interfax reported. "The accident was due to a violation of instructions when launching fireworks,'' senior judicial official Vladimir Markin was quoted as saying. According to emergency ministry officials, the fireworks used in the cafe were meant to be launched in open space and forbidden for use in closed areas. However, a police source quoted by RIA Novosti said that criminal intent could not be ruled out, with ``several details I cannot elaborate on pointing at that version.'' The source compared the Perm accident with the 1977 fire at Moscow's titanic Rossiya hotel, which killed 42 people. The Rossiya fire was ruled to be due to negligence, but the version of deliberate arson remained persistent. A government commission was set up to tackle the tragedy, and two airplanes equipped to transport people with serious burns would be dispatched to Perm, Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin's spokesman Dmitry Peskov said as quoted by RIA Novosti. Russia's Emergency Situations Minister Sergei Shoigu, Interior Minister Rashid Nurgaliyev and Health Minister Tatyana Golikova ``are due to fly to Perm shortly to set up help for the injured as well as find out the cause of the tragedy,'' Peskov added. Prosecutor General Yuri Chaika vouched to personally oversee the investigation, RIA Novosti reported.