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Turkey: 29 killed after fire breaks out at Istanbul nightclub during renovations | VIDEO

The nightclub was closed for renovations and is located on the ground floor of a 16-storey residential building in the Besiktas district. An investigation into the incident was launched and some people have been detained for questioning, according to officials and media reports.

Aveek Banerjee Edited By: Aveek Banerjee @AveekABanerjee Istanbul Updated on: April 03, 2024 17:51 IST
Turkey, Istanbul nightclub, fire, people killed
Image Source : X A fire broke out at a nightclub in Istanbul, Turkey.

Istanbul: At least 29 people died and several others were injured after a fire broke out at an Istanbul nightclub during renovations, according to officials and media reports. At least one person was being treated at a hospital, the Istanbul governor’s office said in a statement.

The Masquerade nightclub, which was closed for renovations, was on the ground floor of a 16-storey residential building in the Besiktas district on the European side of the city. Istanbul Mayor Ekrem Imamoglu said the fire was extinguished and the injured were being treated in nearby hospitals. An investigation into the incident was launched, the city's governor's office said in a statement.

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Istanbul Governor Davut Gul told reporters at the scene that the cause of the fire was under investigation and the victims were believed to be involved in the renovation work. Imamoglu said authorities were inspecting the entire building to assess its safety.

"May God have mercy on our citizens who lost their lives, and I wish a speedy recovery to our injured," Imamoglu posted on X.

Authorities have detained nine people for questioning, including club managers and people in charge of the renovation work. Fire department officials said that the fire was likely caused by welding sparks igniting combustible material, according to media reports on Wednesday,

“The site inspection and evidence collection efforts are ongoing, and a team of 3 experts specializing in occupational safety and fire is also continuing their work to determine the cause of the fire,” he said.

Turkey's President, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, is aware of the tragedy following a phone call with Interior Minister Ali Yerlikaya, BBC reported. Footage by the Istanbul Fire Department showed crews attending the scene with several fire engines and ambulances surrounding the smoking entrance to the building.

The Yeni Safak newspaper, which is close to President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's government, said the fire is believed to have been caused by sparks from a welding machine being used to install sound insulation and decoration material. It reportedly set off an explosion which in turn set other construction material ablaze.

The victims included Gokhan Tevlek, a club DJ, Atanur Aladag, who was employed as a cook, and Akin and Yilmaz Kihri, a father-and-son team of welders, according to Turkish media reports. Video from the scene showed flames billowing from the side of the building, firefighters dousing an entrance to the club and people carrying a victim on a stretcher toward an ambulance.

The nightclub had a capacity of 4,000 guests, according to its website. The manager of the residential building told reporters on Wednesday that the premise was originally designed as a cinema.

(with inputs from agencies)



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