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China restaurant gas explosion kills 31

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China

China restaurant gas explosion kills 31

Nine people have been detained over an explosion at a barbecue restaurant in north-west China which has killed at least 31 people.

A gas leak is suspected to have caused the explosion in Yinchuan city on Wednesday night local time.

President Xi Jinping has called for “all-out efforts” in the rescue and an investigation into the blast.

The owner of the Fuyang Barbecue Restaurant was among those in custody, state media reported.

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The explosion occurred on the eve of the three-day Dragon Boat Festival holiday in China, a time when many families and friends gather for celebratory meals.

Several high school students and retirees were among the dead, local media reported.

The death toll is expected to rise with at least seven people injured, one of whom is in a critical condition, Xinhua news agency reported.

President Xi Jinping has called for maximum efforts in treating the wounded and boosting safety measures.

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“We must do our best to rescue the injured and reassure the families of the casualties, identify the cause of the accident as soon as possible, and seriously pursue responsibility according to the law,” Mr Xi said.

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