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Hong Kong gov't to continue investigations, relief work after Mongkok fire

(Xinhua)

20:14, December 07, 2011

HONG KONG, Dec. 7 (Xinhua) -- The Hong Kong government vowed on Wednesday to continue its investigation into Mongkok's deadly blaze that happened last week, killing nine people and injuring 34.

The Police and the Fire Services Department (FSD) have started an extensive and in-depth investigation into the cause of the fire, said Stephen Lam, chief secretary for administration, while addressing the Legislative Council.

The fire broke out in the early hours of November 30 at Fa Yuen Street, a well-known tourist spot at Kowloon district, which, like other old districts in Hong Kong, is densely populated, with residential flats and shops along narrow streets.

According to the observations of FSD at the scene, highly combustible canvas or plastic materials were found on top of some of the hawker stalls and the separation space between un-linked hawker stalls was inadequate, thus threatening fire safety, said Lam.

"However, the actual causes of the fire and the circumstances leading to the spread of fire cannot be ascertained until the investigation is completed," Lam added.

After investigating the fire scene, the FSD said they could not rule out the possibilities that the fire was started deliberately.

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