Fireworks ignite wedding venue: more than 100 dead, 150 injured

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Nineveh, Iraq: More than 100 people were killed and 150 were injured in a fire at a wedding party in Hamdaniya district in Iraq’s Nineveh province.

Civil defence officers spent the early hours of Wednesday searching the charred skeleton of a building for survivors.

Emergency responders and the public gather around ambulances carrying wounded from the wedding. Credit: AFP

Nineveh Deputy Governor Hasan al-Allaq said 113 people had been confirmed dead, while state media said the death toll was at least 100 and 150 were injured.

The fire ripped through a large events hall in the north-eastern region after fireworks were lit during the celebration, local civil defence said, according to state media.

Video from a Reuters correspondent at the site showed firefighters clambering over the charred wreckage of the building, shining lights over smouldering wreckage as they searched for survivors.

Preliminary information indicated that the building was made of highly flammable construction materials, contributing to its rapid collapse, state media said.

Ambulances and medical crews were dispatched to the site by federal Iraqi authorities and Iraq’s semi-autonomous Kurdistan region, according to official statements.

Eyewitnesses at the site said the building caught fire at about 10.45pm on Tuesday, local time (5.45am Wednesday AEST), and that hundreds of people were in attendance at the time of the incident.


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