Two senior officials of the VK social network, the "Russian Facebook", die in an alleged car accident

There are already nine deaths of Russian oligarchs in strange circumstances since January.

Two senior officials of the VK social network, the "Russian Facebook", die in an alleged car accident

There are already nine deaths of Russian oligarchs in strange circumstances since January. The latest event involves two senior officials from the popular social network VK, Moscow's answer to Facebook, which was banned in the country after the invasion of Ukraine. Both died this Monday in a car accident during an expedition along the White Sea coast, according to local media such as 'Ria Novosti'.

The Sherp off-road vehicle overturned while crossing the Bugryanitsa river and both men "were swept" into the deep sea, according to a VK post by the Reindeer Breeders' Union, who alerted emergency services according to 'Radio Free Europe'.

The bodies were found on the riverbank on Tuesday, 'RIA Novosti' reported, citing an unnamed source from the emergency services.

Vladimir Gabrielyan, deputy general director of VKontakte, and his procurement chief Sergey Merzlyakov were killed near the village of Shoyna in the Nenets Autonomous Region on Russia's northwest coast, the company told Russian state media 'RIA. Novosti'. Both directors were traveling in the company of a friend, Sergei Olsevich, and Gabrielyan's girlfriend, Alena, who were in another vehicle but also died. Alena and Olsevich, who were in one of the cars, tried to surface and reach the shore. The bodies of Gabrielyan and Merzlyakovs were found Tuesday on the river bank.

Four days earlier, Gabrielyan posted footage on VK from inside a Sherp off-road vehicle. According to 'Wired', VK has benefited greatly from the Facebook ban since Russia invaded Ukraine, and has cooperated with government censorship requests since pro-government executives were appointed.

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