Over 100 Killed and 150 Injured in Devastating Wedding Party Fire in Iraq’s Nineveh Province
A horrifying incident unfolded in Iraq’s Nineveh province, leaving over 100 people dead and around 150 injured when a fire broke out at a wedding celebration. The incident took place in the Hamdaniya district, a predominantly Christian area, just outside of the city of Mosul.
The fire erupted after fireworks were ignited during the wedding party in a large events hall in the northeastern region. Emergency workers were left searching for survivors among the charred remains of the building. Deputy Governor Hassan al-Allaq confirmed that 113 people had died, with state media reporting at least 100 fatalities and 150 injuries.
Survivor Recounts Horrifying Scene
Imad Yohana, a 34-year-old survivor, recounted the horrifying scene, describing how the fire erupted out of the hall and those who could escaped, but others were not as fortunate. Video footage from the site showed firefighters sifting through the blackened wreckage of the building. The fire started around 10:45 p.m. local time and hundreds of people were present at the time.
Preliminary Findings Point to Highly Flammable Construction Materials
Preliminary findings suggest that the rapid spread and eventual collapse of the building were due to the use of highly flammable construction materials. The use of such materials has been linked to numerous fire-related disasters around the world, including the 2017 Grenfell Fire in London. The building’s exterior was reportedly decorated with highly flammable cladding, which is illegal in the country.
In response to the incident, both federal Iraqi authorities and the semi-autonomous Kurdistan region dispatched ambulances and medical crews to the site. The injured were transferred to hospitals in Nineveh and the Kurdistan region. Prime Minister Mohammed Shiaa Al Sudani has instructed his cabinet to assist those affected by the fire, according to a statement from his office. The Iraqi leader has been in touch with the Nineveh governor about the incident and ordered a full mobilization to aid the victims.
Investigations into the incident are ongoing. The incident has reignited discussions around safety measures during public events, particularly the use of fireworks and other pyrotechnics in crowded venues. Amid the grief and devastation, the people of the Hamdaniya district and beyond have showcased remarkable resilience and compassion, coming together to support the affected families.
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