South Africa: Over 70 people killed, 50 injured after fire broke out in a building in Johannesburg

In South Africa, over 70 people have been killed and 50 others injured after a fire broke out in a five-storey building in central Johannesburg this morning. Among those killed were seven children. According to reports, emergency services were swiftly mobilized, with fire-fighters currently engaged in efforts to extinguish the raging blaze.

Authorities said the fire had been largely extinguished but smoke still seeped out of windows of the blackened building in downtown Johannesburg. The building was an informal settlement housing homeless people while they looked for permanent accommodation. Reports suggest as many as 200 people lived in the building. South African emergency services spokesperson Robert Mulaudzi said the building’s status as a homeless shelter had made it harder to account for those killed and missing, as those living there were doing so without formal lease agreements.

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