Bangladesh building collapse toll hits 250
"The death toll is now 250," Moshiuddowla Reza, a senior police officer of Dhaka district, told AFP from the disaster site, adding more bodies were being recovered and that most of those who died are female garments workers.
Forty people were rescued alive Thursday from a room inside a collapsed garment factory compound in Bangladesh in an operation broadcast live on national television.
The rescue was greeted with loud cheers by thousands of people massed at the scene of the country's worst industrial accident, near the capital Dhaka.
Bangladesh's prime minister vowed Thursday that a garment factory owner who fled when a compound housing his workers collapsed would be tracked down and punished.
"Those who're involved, especially the owner who forced the workers to work there, will be punished," Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina told lawmakers after Wednesday's tragedy, which claimed more than 230 lives.
"Wherever he is, he will be found and brought to justice," she added.
The building, which housed garment factories, a bank, and a shopping center, collapsed early Wednesday on the outskirts of the Bangladeshi capital of Dhaka.
Firefighters and army personnel works at the collapse site of the eight-story building to save people who were still trapped inside. Mohammad Asaduzzaman, officer in charge of the area’s police station, stated that the collapse happened at the Rana Plaza building in Savar.
Asaduzzaman added that factory owners appeared to have ignored a warning not to allow their workers into the building after a crack was detected in the block on Wednesday.
While crews are still working to access the building’s interior, reports say that only the ground floor remained intact. Fire official Md Jibon Mia stated, “We don’t know how many were inside the building, but it would be many.”
Voice of Russia, Reuters, AFP, Interfax