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Fatal fire at Saudi Arabia hospital

Published 24/12/2015

Firefighters respond to a blaze at a hospital in Jizan, Saudi Arabia (Saudi Civil Defence via AP)
Firefighters respond to a blaze at a hospital in Jizan, Saudi Arabia (Saudi Civil Defence via AP)

At least 31 people have been killed and more than 100 others injured in a fire at a hospital in Saudi Arabia, the government said.

The blaze broke out in the early hours of Thursday around the hospital's intensive care, maternity and neonatal care wards in the port city of Jizan in the province of the same name.

The cause remains unknown, said Saudi civil defence spokesman Major Yahya bin Abdullah al-Qahtani.

Later in the day, the kingdom's health ministry put the death toll at 25, saying 123 people were injured.

The ministry said those injured were transferred to hospitals nearby and that an investigation is under way to find out the causes of the fire.

All babies in incubators were rescued, it added.

The kingdom has suffered a number of large-scale accidents this year, including a crane collapse in Mecca that killed 111 and a stampede that killed at least 2,411 during the hajj pilgrimage in September, according to an Associated Press count.

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