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China: 25 Dead, Scores Hospitalised In Shanxi Building Fire

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At least 25 people have died after a fire tore through an office building in northern China, state media report.

The fire at the four-storey building in Luliang City, Shanxi province broke out at around 07:00 local time on Thursday (23:00 GMT Wednesday).

Of the dozens evacuated from the Yongju Coal Industry Joint Building, 51 people were taken to hospital.

Rescue operations are ongoing even as the fire is under control, according to state media. Video posted on Chinese social media platform Weibo by the state-run Beijing Youth Daily showed flames and thick smoke coming out of the building.

The blaze broke out in a province that is the country’s largest producer of coal. Industrial accidents, which can result in fires, are common in China due to lax safety standards and poor enforcement.

In April, 29 people died in a hospital fire in the capital of Beijing, sparking public anger as many questioned the lack of reporting on the incident and why the relatives of patients were not informed earlier.

Last October, an explosion at a barbecue restaurant in the north-western Yinchuan province killed 31 people.

Written by: Kevin Nwabueze

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