China nightclub blast kills 5, injures 32 - report

  • World
  • Thursday, 05 Jul 2007

BEIJING (Reuters) - An explosion in a nightclub in northeast China killed 5 people, injured 32 and others were still missing, state media reported on Thursday as investigators sought to pin down the cause. 

The China News Service reported the blast hit a club in Benxi county, Liaoning province, at about 9 p.m. (1300 GMT) on Wednesday. Four of the injured were badly hurt and rescuers were searching for another dozen or so people. 

A county official at the scene told Reuters that investigators were trying to work out whether the blast was accidental or deliberate. 

"It's too early to announce any conclusions. We're still working on rescuing people," said the official, who gave his surname as Chi. He said the number of dead was still unclear. 

The Communist Party chief of Liaoning province, Li Keqiang, ordered harsh punishment of anyone found to be responsible for the explosion, the news service said. 

Also on Wednesday night, a fire swept through a cinema complex in Hengyang city in central Hunan province. The Beijing Youth Daily said the number of casualties remained unclear. 

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