At least 41 dead after fire breaks out in overcrowded Indonesian prison (photos)

At least 41 dead after fire breaks out in overcrowded Indonesian prison (photos)



A massive fire raged through an overcrowded prison in Jakarta, Indonesia, early today, killing at least 41 inmates, two of them foreigners serving drug sentences, and injuring 80 others.



A government spokesperson said the fire broke out between 1 and 2am on September 8 at the Tangerang Prison Block C.







Televised footage showed firefighters battling to extinguish the fire while black smoke billowed from the compound.







Indonesian Red Cross officials evacuated the victims to ambulances and dozens of bodies in bags were laid in a room of Tangerang prison on the outskirts of Jakarta.







Rika Apriantia, spokeswoman of the prison department of the law and human rights ministry, said: "The cause is under investigation."



The preliminary investigation into the cause of the fire that started around 1.45 a.m. pointed to a short circuit in one of 19 cells in prison Block C2, Jakarta Police Chief Fadil Imran said.



The block affected by the fire houses inmates being held for drug-related offences and had a capacity for 122 people, she added.







However, the number of people present when the fire began has not been confirmed, but it has been reported the jail was overcrowded.



The prison in Tangerang, an industrial and manufacturing hub near Jakarta, housed more than 2,000 inmates.


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