Sun. Jun 23rd, 2024
Tragedy Strikes Qaraqosh: Devastating Fire Claims Over 100 Lives at Wedding Celebration in Iraq

Tragedy Strikes Qaraqosh: Devastating Fire Claims Over 100 Lives at Wedding Celebration in Iraq

Tragedy Strikes Qaraqosh: Devastating Fire Claims Over 100 Lives at Wedding Celebration in Iraq

Horrible tragedy in Qaraqosh: More than 100 people died in fire at wedding ceremony

In a heartbreaking incident, a devastating fire broke out at a wedding ceremony in Iraq’s largest Christian city of Qaraqosh, resulting in the loss of at least 100 lives and injuries to around 150 others. The incident occurred during a wedding reception at a banquet hall located in Nineveh province. The festive atmosphere was plunged into panic and chaos after the fire broke out in the presence of hundreds of guests.

Cause of fire

The exact cause of the fire is unknown, but initial reports suggest that fireworks may have caused the fire. The flames spread rapidly due to flammable panels within the hall, causing parts of the ceiling to collapse, further compounding the tragedy. Eyewitnesses at the scene recalled terrifying moments when burning debris began falling onto the dance floor, trapping many people inside. One of the survivors, described the blazing fire and the harrowing struggle to escape. Another guest, described how the ceiling-mounted firecrackers turned the hall into hell, creating panic and confusion among the attendees.

Government response

The President of Iraq expressed his condolences and directed officials to provide relief to the affected families. Prime Minister Mohammed Shia al-Sudani promised to conduct building inspections and investigate safety procedures, while holding officials accountable for any negligence. He also announced three days of national mourning.

The uncertain toll and the lasting pain

The number of victims remains uncertain, with varying reports. The deputy governor of Nineveh confirmed 113 deaths, while humanitarian groups reported about 450 dead and injured. The injured were taken to hospitals in the Nineveh area. Nevertheless, inadequate resources and logistics create challenges in providing timely assistance to victims.

Qaraqosh, previously Iraq’s largest Christian city, was captured by ISIS in 2014, leading to mass displacement. The city, which gained independence in 2016, has undergone partial rehabilitation, but many destroyed houses await reconstruction. This tragic incident highlights ongoing challenges in Iraq, including corruption, mismanagement and lack of accountability. In 2021, a fire at a hospital in Nasiriyah killed nearly 100 people, raising concerns about safety measures and health care infrastructure.

As Qaraqosh mourns its loss, it serves as a stark reminder of the obstacles Iraq faces on its path to stability and recovery.

Video Footage (255) Fire in Iraq kills more than 100 people during wedding celebration – YouTube
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