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At Least 220 Die As Tanker Truck Explodes In Congo

At least 220 people are reported to have died and dozens were injured today when a tanker truck filled with oil exploded and set fire to a village in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo.

Reports say many local residents had raced to the truck to siphon off leaking oil after it overturned.

Dozens of mostly earth and straw homes in the village of Sange, close to the border with Burundi, were engulfed in the blaze after the accident, which a police officer said was caused by the truck's "excessive speed."

The Associated Press quotes the officer, who asked not to be named, as saying many of those who surrounded the vehicle before it exploded were children.

compiled from agency reports