Iraq: 82 killed in fire at Baghdad hospital treating COVID-19 patients

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  • Sky News published this video item, entitled “Iraq: 82 killed in fire at Baghdad hospital treating COVID-19 patients” – below is their description.

    A fire caused by an oxygen tank exploding at an Iraqi hospital treating COVID-19 patients has killed at least 82 people and injured 110 more.

    Iraq’s Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi has responded by sacking key hospital officials, as well as suspending the country’s health minister and referring him for investigation.

    The fire broke out at Ibn Khatib hospital in the Diyala Bridge area of Iraqi capital Baghdad on Saturday night, with reports suggesting an oxygen cylinder exploded on a ward.

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  • In This Story: Iraq

    Iraq, officially the Republic of Iraq, is a country in Western Asia. The capital and largest city is Baghdad. Iraq is home to diverse ethnic groups including Arabs, Kurds, Turkmen, Assyrians, Yazidis, Shabakis, Armenians, Mandaeans, Circassians, Sabians and Kawliya. Around 99% of the country’s 38 million citizens are Muslims, with small minorities of Christians, Yarsans, Yezidis and Mandeans also present. The official languages of Iraq are Arabic and Kurdish.

    Iraq has a coastline measuring 58 km (36 miles) on the northern Persian Gulf and encompasses the Mesopotamian Alluvial Plain, the northwestern end of the Zagros mountain range and the eastern part of the Syrian Desert. Two major rivers, the Tigris and Euphrates, run south through Iraq and into the Shatt al-Arab near the Persian Gulf. These rivers provide Iraq with significant amounts of fertile land. The region between the Tigris and Euphrates rivers, historically known as Mesopotamia, is often referred to as the cradle of civilisation.

    Iraq is a federal parliamentary republic consisting of 19 governorates, four of which make up the autonomous Kurdistan Region. Disputes over the sovereignty of Kurdistan Region continue.

    Iraq is a founding member of the UN as well as of the Arab League, OIC, Non-Aligned Movement and the IMF.

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