Iraqi state TV says fire in coronavirus ward kills 36 people

BAGHDAD (AP) — A fire swept through a coronavirus ward in southern Iraq, killing at least 36 people, Iraqi state TV said late Monday

The report said all those who died suffered severe burns during the fire at the al-Hussein Teaching Hospital in the southern city of Nasiryah.

The new ward, opened just three months ago, contained 70 beds, said two hospital officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity in line with regulations.

The cause of the fire was not immediately known.

It was the second time a large fire has killed coronavirus patients in an Iraqi hospital this year. At least 82 people died at Ibn al-Khateeb hospital in Baghdad in April when an oxygen tank exploded, sparking the blaze.

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