MOSCOW (Armradio) — The wreckage of Soviet hospital ship Armenia sunk by German aviation in 1941 has been found in the Black Sea, 15 miles away from the Crimean coast, RIA Novosti quotes the Russian Geographic Society as saying.

It has been estimated that approximately 5,000 to 7,000 people were killed during the sinking, making it one of the deadliest maritime disasters in history. There were only eight survivors.

The Russian Geographical Society says the vessel stands on an even keel as a single fragment. The hull is covered with a layer of silt, but does not have obvious holes, which eliminates the possibility of being destroyed by torpedoes, as the official version puts it.

At the same time, superstructures and decks have obvious and terrifying traces of destruction: railings and other vertical elements are turned outward. Most likely, these are the consequences of explosions as a result of air bombs.

The sunken ship has been actively searched for over the past 20 years. More than 300 square kilometers of the seabed were explored. The search has been carried out by the Russian Ministry of Defense. The research and identification of the vessel involved specialists from the Center for Underwater Research of the Russian Geographical Society.

The ship was built in 1928 in Leningrad. A vessel for 950 passengers was rebuilt for ambulance transport in Odessa in 1941. As a medical vessel, it used to transport injured soldiers, civilians and medical supplies.

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