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20 pupils die in school fire after being trapped in Niger Republic

The lives of 20 nursery school children were cut short on Tuesday as they were trapped in straw-hut classrooms in Niamey, Niger Republic.

A school in Niger Republic with a population of 800 has been thrown into mourning after a fire outbreak killed 20 children.

The head of the state fire service, Bako Boubacar, confirmed the deaths, NAN reports.

“There were 20 deaths, most of them young children,” he said.

Boubacar, however, said the cause of the fire is unknown.

An official of Niger Republic’s teachers union, Mounkaila Halidou, said the school in the popular Pays Bas neighbourhood had around 800 students, including children in the nursery section.

Halidou said the fire started near the school gate and since there was no emergency exit, many were forced to scale the fence, while others were trapped.

He added that a majority of the children who died are in preschool.

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