24 students and teachers have died in a fire at a school in the Malaysian capital, Kuala Lumpur.
The fire, which started early this morning, was probably caused by some fault in the electricity system.
The victims, 22 0f them students aged between 13 and 17 years, were in a dormitory in which the windows were barred.
The Koran is taught at this school, and those attending are live-in students.
According to the fire and rescue director, there have been a number of fires in this zone in the past 20 years. The director explained that the building is surrounded by iron railings, and they could not get through them quickly enough to rescue the students. When they became aware of the fire the students tried to escape through the windows, but were unable to do so because of the protective bars. The director said the students were crying for help to enable them to leave the building, but it was not an easy task to get them out because of the obstacles created by the iron bars.