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Two Factory Fires Kill More Than 190 In Pakistan's Two Largest Cities

DAWN (Pakistan), TIMES OF INDIA (India), AL JAZEERA (Qatar)


KARACHIAt least 191 people were killed in two separate factory fires in the Pakistani cities of Karachi and Lahore.

Officials said Wednesday that 166 people where killed after a fire broke out in a factory in the coastal megalopolis of Karachi, and dozens of workers were hurt as they jumped out of windows.

Some 150 employees were working in the underwear manufacturing factory when the fire broke out late Tuesday, reports Pakistani daily Dawn.

Some 40 firefighting vehicles were needed to tackle the blaze and police said they were investing the cause of the fire. (See video below)

It is the most deadly industrial disaster in decades to hit the city of Karachi, which has a population approaching 20 million, adds the Times of India.

Earlier in the day, a fire swept through a four-story shoe factory in the eastern city of Lahore, killing at least 25 workers.

It broke out when workers tried to start their generator after a power failure. Sparks from the generator made contact with chemicals used to make the shoes, igniting the blaze, reports Al Jazeera.

The factory was illegally set up in a residential part of the city and the main escape route was blocked, trapping many of the workers who died by suffocation.

In a statement, Prime Minister Raja Pervaiz Ashraf expressed shock and grief over the deaths in Pakistan"s two largest cities.

Factory fires are common in the country as most buildings lack fire alarms or emergency exits.

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FOCUS: Israel-Palestine War

BDS And Us: Gaza's Toll Multiplies Boycotts Of Israel And Its Allies — Seinfeld Included

In Egypt and elsewhere in the region and the world, families and movements are mobilizing against companies that support Israel's war on Gaza. The power of the people lies in their control as consumers — and the list of companies and brands to boycott grows longer.

A campaign poster with the photo of a burger with blood coming out of it with text reading "You Kill" and the Burger King logo

A campaign poster to boycott Burger King in Bangkok, Malü

Matt Hunt/ZUMA
Mohammed Hamama

CAIRO — Ali Al-Din’s logic is simple and straightforward: “If you buy a can (of soda), you'll get the bullet too...”

Those bullets are the ones killing the children of Gaza every day, and the can he refuses to buy is “kanzaya” – the popular Egyptian soft drink. It is just one of a long list of products he had the habit of consuming. Ali is nine years old.

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The clarity and simplicity of this logic has pushed Ali Al-Din to boycott all the products on the lists people are circulating of companies that have supported Israel since the attacks on Gaza began in October. His mother, Heba, points out that her son took responsibility for overseeing the boycott in their home.

A few days ago, he saw a can of “Pyrosol” insecticide, but he thought it was one of the products of the “Raid” company that was on the boycott’s lists. He warned his mother that this product was on the boycott list, but she explained that the two products were different. Ali al-Din and his younger brother also abstained from eating any food from McDonald's. “They love McDonald’s very much,” his mother says. “But they refuse.”

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