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8 newborn babies killed in fire in Algerian maternity hospital

"Mosquito repellent is a primary cause of the fire," Algerian Health Minister Mohamed Miraoui was quoted as saying by Ennahar TV channel.

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Algiers Updated on: September 24, 2019 16:26 IST
8 newborn babies killed in fire in Algerian maternity hospital
Image Source : PTI

8 newborn babies killed in fire in Algerian maternity hospital

Eight newborns were killed on Tuesday in a fire in the maternity wing of an Algerian hospital near the border with Tunisia, authorities said.

The health minister said the blaze may have been caused by a defective anti-mosquito device.

The national emergency service said in a statement that the fire was under control but not yet extinguished. It said 11 newborns, 37 mothers and 28 employees were evacuated after the blaze broke out at 4 a.m. (0300 GMT) in the town of El Oued, 600 kilometers (360 miles) southeast of the capital, Algiers.

Three babies died of burns and five of asphyxiation, the emergency service said.

Health Minister Mohamed Miraoui said on Ennahar television that an investigation will determine whether the anti-mosquito device was responsible.

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