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Egypt: building collapses in Cairo killing 9 people

Egypt: building collapses in Cairo killing 9 people
Rescuers search through the rubble of a collapsed five-story apartment building...   -  
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A five-storey building collapsed in the Egyptian capital Cairo on Monday, killing at least nine people, authorities said, as rescuers dig through the rubble.

Building collapses are common in Egypt, where shoddy construction and lack of maintenance are widespread in slums, city slums and rural areas.

The state-run MENA news agency reported that rescue teams recovered at least nine bodies from under the rubble of the building in Cairo's Hadaeq el-Qubbah district, about 3.2 km from the center of the city.

Four survivors were also taken to hospital and authorities evacuated a nearby building, according to MENA.

After an initial inspection, Cairo's deputy governor, Hossam Fawzi, said the collapse was caused by one of the residents on the ground floor who had removed several walls during earlier maintenance work. The man has been arrested and will be investigated, he added.

Egypt's Ministry of Social Solidarity said it would donate 60,000 Egyptian pounds ($1,940) to the families of the nine victims. The ministry also said it would provide aid to the injured and was monitoring damage to nearby properties.

Police forces cordoned off the area while rescue teams searched the rubble for possible survivors, according to local reports.

The government has tried to crack down on illegal construction in recent years, after decades of lax enforcement. Authorities are also building new towns and neighborhoods to relocate people living in at-risk areas.

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