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Russian Region's Fire-Control Officials Fired As Death Toll Rises

Prime Minister Vladimir Putin lays flowers outside the Lame Horse nightclub on December 8.
PERM, Russia -- Several officials in the Fire Control Department in Russia's Perm Krai were fired today as the death toll from a deadly nightclub fire rose, RFE/RL's Russian Service reports.

Seven top department officials -- including the chief fire-control inspector and his deputy -- were dismissed from their posts.

The deadly blaze at the Khromaya Loshad (Lame Horse) nightclub in the city of Perm early on the morning of December 5 killed 118 people and injured more than 100.

The death toll may increase further as many of the injured are in critical condition.

Investigators said the fire was caused by pyrotechnics used inside the nightclub that set the ceiling alight.

The owner of the nightclub, two of its managers, and the chief of the company that provided fireworks to the nightclub were arrested and
charged with manslaughter on December 7.