Hotel fire in northern Iraq kills 43, wounds 21

20:42, July 16, 2010      

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View of the fire-damaged Soma Hotel in the Iraqi northern city of Sulaimaniyah July 16, 2010. (Xinhua/AFP Photo)

The death toll of a fire at a hotel Friday in Iraq's northern Kurdish city of Sulaimaniyah has increased to 43, and 21 others were also wounded, local police source said.

The fire occurred at about 5:15 a.m. (0215 GMT) at the Somo hotel in Sulaimaniyah; many of the dead were from Bangladesh, Philippine and Thailand, said the source, adding four Americans were among the dead.

At least six of the victims jumped from the fourth floor of the hotel because of the fire, he added.

Most of the dead were killed because of the heavy smoke, according to a source from the local hospital.

Local police has said this incident does not look like a terrorist attack but a result of an electricity problem.

Different from the Arab Iraq, Sulaimaniyah locates in Iraq's northern Kurdish autonomous region, enjoys relative peace and prosperity after the U.S.-led invasion in 2003. Many foreigners visit the area for tourism and business every year.

Source: Xinhua

View of the fire-damaged Soma Hotel in the Iraqi northern city of Sulaimaniyah July 16, 2010. (Xinhua/AFP Photo)



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