– At least 100 dead in fire at wedding
Prefabricated panels “highly flammable and in violation of safety standards” were in the northern Iraq party hall where a deadly fire broke out.
Published today at 1:58 a.m. Updated 2 hours ago
At the main hospital in Hamdaniyah, a small predominantly Christian town located east of the metropolis of Mosul, an AFP photographer saw several ambulances arriving, sirens blaring.
At least 100 people died in Iraq and 150 others were injured overnight from Tuesday to Wednesday in a fire during a wedding in a village hall in Hamdaniyah, a small town in the north of the country, according to health authorities.
Residents were also gathered in front of the open doors of a refrigerated truck carrying several black body bags, according to the photographer.
Poorly respected safety standards
In a press release, Civil Defense reported the presence of prefabricated panels that were “highly flammable and contravene safety standards” in the party room where the tragedy took place. “The fire caused parts of the ceiling to fall, due to the use of highly flammable and inexpensive construction materials,” according to the same source. “Preliminary information indicates that fireworks were used during a wedding which caused a fire in the venue,” the statement added.
In Iraq, safety standards are poorly respected, whether in the construction or transport sector. The country, with its infrastructure in disrepair after decades of conflict, is regularly the scene of fires or fatal domestic accidents.
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