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Central & South Asia

Many killed in Bangladesh factory fire

At least six garment workers killed barely two months after 112 perished in country's deadliest blaze.
Last Modified: 26 Jan 2013 14:00
The fire was allegedly sparked on the lower floor welding repair shop in Dhaka, Bangladesh [AFP]

At least six garment workers have been killed and 10 others injured in a factory fire in Bangladeshi capital Dhaka, according to fire fighters and witnesses.

The blaze on Saturday comes just two months after the country's worst factory fire that killed 112 workers.

Witnesses said the fire at Smart Fashions, located on the upper floor of a two-storey building of Mohammadpur, was sparked in a tyre repair and welding shop downstairs.

Fire fighters and police have deployed teams to the building to control the situation and pulled out six bodies, and the exact cause of the fire has yet to be determined.

A source at the Reuters news agency confirmed: "Everything inside the factory has been gutted".

A fire at Tazreen Fashions Limited in a Dhaka suburb in November killed 112 workers and injured at least 150, a blaze
that focused world attention on poor safety standards in the country's garment sector.

Working conditions at Bangladeshi factories are notoriously poor, with little enforcement of safety laws. Overcrowding and
locked fire doors are common.

Bangladesh's 4,500 garment factories account for 40 percent of the country's industrial workforce.

Around 700 people have been killed in fires in garment factories since 2006.

It is the world's biggest exporter of clothing after China, with garments making up 80 percent of its $24bn annual exports.

Officials in the industry have demanded quick implementation of recommendations to improve standards in a report that
concluded the Tazreen blaze was the result of both sabotage and negligence.

Western clothing brands, including Wal-Mart Stores Inc, have announced tougher measures to ensure safety standards are upheld.

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Source:
Agencies
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