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February 21, 2024

At least 7 dead, 30 injured in Cambodia casino fire

UPDATED AT 4:58 a.m. ET on 12-29-2022

A massive fire in a Cambodia casino complex has killed at least seven people and injured more than 30.

The blaze at the Grand Diamond City Casino in Poipet, on the border with Thailand, broke out shortly before midnight on Wednesday.

Photographs showed people shining lights from windows and clambering onto ledges to escape the flames as firefighters tried to control the blaze.

Media in Thailand reported that many of the injured were Thai staff and customers of the casino.

Thai authorities said one Thai national was confirmed dead but did not disclose the name ahead of an autopsy.

Thailand sent fire crews and helicopters to fight the blaze and evacuate the injured to hospitals across the border.

Thailand’s Minister of Public Health Anutin Charnvirakul said Thursday 108 of the injured were transferred to Sa Kaeo province but only 34 were admitted to hospitals there.

“The conditions ranged from slight to severe. Mostly, they suffered burns, smoke inhalation and breathing difficulties. Some were on ventilators. Some fractured bones by jumping,” Anutin said.

“We give treatment to all injured regardless of nationality on a humanitarian basis,” he said, adding that he had asked the regional health department to send a forensic team and autopsy equipment to identify the dead.

The fire was finally put out at 2 p.m. Thursday, the AP news agency reported, citing a spokesman for Cambodia’s Banteay Meanchey province. 

This story has been updated to include comments from Thailand’s public health minister.

Reuters, AP and AFP contributed to this report.

BenarNews is an RFA-affiliated news service.

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