Fri, 20 Sep 2019

Authorities in the Ukrainian city of Odesa say nine people were killed and 10 others injured by a fire that broke out at a budget hotel during the early morning hours of August 17.

Police initially reported eight dead but raised the death toll after finding another body inside one of the rooms of the Tokyo Star Hotel.

Police say more than 100 people were evacuated from the building, adding that they have launched criminal proceedings into the fire.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy wrote on Facebook that he was taking the investigation under his personal control.

Zelenskiy said that "those personally responsible for the fire will answer" for their actions - including the owner of the "so-called hotel."

"I will personally monitor that the punishment is in line with the law and justice," Zelenskiy wrote on Facebook.

Odesa's Regional State Administration announced that it was declaring August 18 as a day of mourning to commemorate those who died

Based on reporting by Reuters, AP, AFP, dpa, and TASS

Copyright (c) 2018. RFE/RL, Inc. Republished with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave NW, Ste 400, Washington DC 20036

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