icon bookmark-bicon bookmarkicon cameraicon checkicon chevron downicon chevron lefticon chevron righticon chevron upicon closeicon v-compressicon downloadicon editicon v-expandicon fbicon fileicon filtericon flag ruicon full chevron downicon full chevron lefticon full chevron righticon full chevron upicon gpicon insicon mailicon moveicon-musicicon mutedicon nomutedicon okicon v-pauseicon v-playicon searchicon shareicon sign inicon sign upicon stepbackicon stepforicon swipe downicon tagicon tagsicon tgicon trashicon twicon vkicon yticon wticon fm
17 Dec, 2021 06:24

24 dead in suspected arson attack in Japan – media

24 dead in suspected arson attack in Japan – media

There are 24 confirmed dead after a fire broke out in a psychiatric clinic in an eight-story multiple tenant building in Osaka, Japan, according to local media. Police are investigating arson as the possible cause.

A fire consumed the building – which houses a mental health clinic, among other businesses – near the busy Kitashinchi train station on Friday. Photos show the windows of the fourth floor broken and burned.

One local paper, citing police sources, suggested that an elderly man entered the building holding a bag which leaked flammable liquid. The liquid ignited, causing the fire.

A spokesperson for Osaka Police told AFP that the tragedy was possibly the result of an “arson attack, given the circumstances at the scene,” but noted that the cause of the fire was still under investigation.

Twenty-seven people in the building reportedly showed no signs of life and were found in a state of cardiac arrest, with 23 transported to hospitals in the area. An additional person was reportedly injured.

One witness who works in the area told reporters that she “looked outside and saw an orange flame from the window of the building’s fourth floor.” The witness also said that a woman “was waving her hand from the sixth floor, seeking rescue.”

The incident could be the latest in a string of arson attacks that have shaken Japan.

In 2019, an arson attack on Kyoto Animation studios left 33 people dead. Violent crime is extremely unusual in Japan, and the Kyoto Animation arson is one of the worst mass murders in the country in at least 18 years.

In October, a man dressed as ‘Batman’ villain ‘the Joker’ stabbed 17 people on a Tokyo subway train before dousing the train car in a flammable liquid and setting it on fire.