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Fire engulfs migrant center in Bosnia, injuring 32

International

A firefighter helps douse a fire at a factory building being used as a migrant center, after a major fire at the building in Velika Kladusa, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Saturday, June 1, 2019. The blaze erupted early Saturday at the centre which hosts some 500 migrants, injuring over thirty migrants, police said.(AP Photo)

SARAJEVO, Bosnia-Herzegovina (AP) — A fire engulfed a migrant center in northwestern Bosnia on Saturday, injuring 32 people and forcing some to jump out the windows to escape the blaze, police said.

The blaze erupted early in the morning in the center in Velika Kladusa, which hosts some 500 migrants who have become stuck in the impoverished Balkan country while trying to move toward wealthier nations in Western Europe.

The blaze likely started accidently from a cooking device, said local police spokesman Ale Siljdedic.

It spread swiftly, sending the migrants fleeing the building, with some jumping to safety out the windows, Siljdedic told The Associated Press.

Thirteen migrants remain hospitalized with injuries such as burns or fractures, he said. The fire was put out after several hours.

Several thousand migrants fleeing war and poverty in their countries have been passing through Bosnia toward the West. They mostly flock to the northwest, which borders European Union member Croatia.

Copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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