Another fire drama on a corona station in Iraq.

After a major fire in the Corona ward in a hospital in the southern Iraqi city of Nasiriyya, the death toll has risen to 92.

39 bodies have so far been identified and handed over to their relatives, said a representative of forensic medicine on Tuesday afternoon. According to him, other victims could be buried under the rubble.

The AFP news agency learned from hospital circles that the fire was triggered by an explosion of oxygen bottles. The people died of severe burns, said health authority spokesman Haidar al-Samili.


Some passers-by filmed the fire drama and posted videos on the networkFoto: Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

Al-Samili first gave the total number of beds in the Corona ward as 60 and later corrected it to 70. 16 patients were rescued from the burning ward. Initially, there was talk of 41 fatalities and five injured.


16 patients were rescued from the burning corona ward of the Al-Hussein Hospital

16 patients were rescued from the burning corona ward of the Al-Hussein HospitalFoto: Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

The Al-Hussein Hospital is located in the city of Nasiriyah in the province of Dhi Qar, around 370 kilometers south of the capital Baghdad.

Videos circulating on the Internet show huge billows of black smoke rising from the Al-Hussein Hospital. The local fire brigade managed to bring the fire under control.

Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhemi held an emergency meeting with ministers and security chiefs to determine the causes of the fire, his office announced on Tuesday morning (local time).


Police and fire brigade in front of the Nasiriyya hospital

Police and fire brigade in front of the Nasiriyya hospitalFoto: Anadolu Agency via Getty Images


The hospital's corona ward was completely destroyed

The hospital’s corona ward was completely destroyedPhoto: KHALID AL-MOUSILY/REUTERS


Nasiriyah Al-Hussein Hospital after the fire

Nasiriyah Al-Hussein Hospital after the firePhoto: KHALID AL-MOUSILY/REUTERS

It was only in April that there was a devastating fire in a corona clinic in the Iraqi capital, Baghdad, in which 82 people died and 110 others were injured. The then Health Minister Hassan al-Tamimi resigned in response to the fire disaster, the cause of which was stated to be incorrectly stored oxygen bottles.

So far, around 1.4 million infections with the coronavirus have been reported in Iraq. The vaccinations are making slow progress there. According to statistics website Our World in Data, less than two percent of the population received at least one dose of vaccine.

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