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Several Hurt, One Dead in Fire at Migrant Center Near Paris

Investigators have yet to determine the cause, but France's presidency issued a statement saying the incident had "a criminal origin"

Migrants and fire fighters gather outside a migrant workers' center after a fire broke out in Bouglogne-Billancourt, west of Paris, Friday, Dec. 16, 2016, photo: AP/Michel Euler
1 year ago

French police are investigating a fire that broke out in a migrant workers’ center near Paris that left one person dead, a dozen injured and forced the evacuation of 300 people.

Investigators have yet to determine the cause, but France’s presidency issued a statement saying the incident had “a criminal origin.”

Nanterre prosecutors’ office said the fire started around 3:30 a.m. Friday in the suburb of Boulogne-Billancourt, west of Paris.

The Paris firefighters’ press office said six people rescued with ladders were saved “from a certain death” and around a dozen people suffered minor injuries from inhaling toxic smoke. Nearly 300 people were evacuated and the fire was quickly extinguished.

Paris firefighters said three people were seriously injured when they jumped out of the building’s upper windows to escape the flames. It was unclear whether the person who died was among those three.

Prime Minister Bernard Cazeneuve promised to investigate and expressed solidarity with the victims in a message posted on Twitter.

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