4000 fish die in airport hold-up

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Over 4,000 fish have died after being held up in customs at an airport in the Russian Black Sea resort city of Sochi.

The shipment of fish " worth a reported 297,000 " had been destined for Sochi Discovery World, Russia s largest oceanarium, which is due to open later this month.

Amin Azzam, head of Sochi Discovery World, described the events as an atrocity unseen anywhere else in the world.

The 18-ton cargo, containing over 4,000 exotic fish from China, was standing at customs at Sochi Airport for more than 14 hours in quite hot weather, Azzam told Russia Today.

Svetlana Stepanova, head of Sochi customs, however, said that while they feel sorry for the fish, the oceanarium had not produced the required documentation to allow the customs officials to permit the shipment into its storage facilities.

The Sochi Discovery World oceanarium is a 15million project forming part of Sochi s 2014 Winter Olympics development.