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Page last updated at 22:50 GMT, Tuesday, 19 August 2008 23:50 UK

Egypt's parliament hit by blaze

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Fire ravages through Egypt's parliament

At least 13 people have been hurt in a fire at the upper house of the Egyptian parliament in Cairo, officials say.

The cause of the blaze is unclear, but officials say it could have been caused by an electrical short-circuit.

Flames and smoke billowed from the building, and roads in the city centre were closed as firefighters - backed by army helicopters - tackled the fire.

They managed to contain the blaze only several hours after it broke out at about 1430 GMT.

The fire caused severe damage to a parliamentary archive room and several meeting chambers, officials said.

Most of the injured required hospital treatment for smoke inhalation and other injuries.

Both houses of parliament are currently in summer recess.


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