Atleast 12 people were killed and 60 injured on Monday after a depot containing seized Iranian arms exploded at Cyprus main naval base damaging the island’s biggest power station.

The 98 barrels containing an estimated 2,000 tonnes of high explosive had been stored for two years in the open, in temperature of up to 40 C, despite concerns of officers from the Cypriot National Guard.

Shockwaves could be heard 40 miles away in the capital, Nicosia. The country’s defence minister and military chief both resigned after the blast.

The Cypriot government ruled out sabotage as it announced that the commander of the Cypriot navy and the military base were among those killed in the explosion.