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100 killed, 150 injured as fire rips through Iraq wedding
Baghdad: At least 100 people were killed as a fire broke out during a wedding party in northern Iraq, reported CNN citing the Iraqi state news agency INA.
Reportedly, 150 people have been injured in the blaze, according to local authorities, the media outlet said.
The deadly fire took place in the Hamdaniya district of northeast Nineveh governorate. The mishap was set off by candles, and other flammable materials used during the celebration, the Iraqi Civil Defense said.
Nineveh governor Najm Al-Jubouri said that the injured were taken to hospitals in Ninevah and the Kurdistan region.
“There is no final count of the deceased and injured yet,” Al-Jubouri said, reported CNN citing INA.
Videos from the site showed thick smoke billowing out of the Al Haytham Wedding Hall while crowds and ambulances gathered outside the venue.
According to a wedding guest, the bride and groom were safe but devasted, CNN reported.
“The bride and groom are fine. I was just with them now, but their condition is devastating due to what happened to people here,” the guest told the private Iraqi channel Alawla TV.
The wedding hall was covered with highly flammable Ecobond panels that violated safety instructions requirements, CNN reported citing Iraqi Civil Defense.
“The fire led to the collapse of parts of the hall as a result of the use of highly flammable, low-cost building materials that collapse within minutes when fire breaks out,” the Civil Defense statement said.
Following the incident, Iraq Prime Minister Mohammed Shia' Al Sudani directed his cabinet to assist the affected people, according to a statement from his office.
Moreover, Sudani has been in contact with the Nineveh governor about the fatal incident and ordered a full mobilization to aid the victims, reported CNN citing INA.