A rescue operation is under way in the Caspian Sea amid reports than at least 31 workers on an off-shore oil platform may have died in a fire.
Mirvari Gakhramanly, of Azerbaijan’s Oil Workers’ Rights Protection Committee, told the BBC that the workers were missing, presumed dead.
Azerbaijan’s state energy company, Socar, said 29 workers had been evacuated but denied any deaths.
A severe storm is said to be complicating the rescue effort.
Socar said on Friday that a gas pipeline on the platform in Azerbaijan’s Guneshli oil field had caught fire after being damaged in strong winds.