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Punishment sought for those culpable in Iran school fire

Tehran, Jan 16, IRNA -- Parliament Speaker Gholamali Haddad Adel demanded Sunday that those responsible for the deaths of 13 children in a fire in southwest Iran be duly dealt with.

"There must be due punishment for those who have been lax and culpable commensurate with their responsibility," he said in an open session of the parliament.

The elementary school children died when a faulty heater in their classroom in Safilan village in Chahar Mahal Bakhtiari province caught fire, blocking the doorway and suffocating them.

Their teacher, who tried to throw the heater out of the classroom, sustained severe burns of 80 percent.

An unknown source told IRNA reporter in the central city of Isfahan that the teacher -- Yazdan Khosravi -- was being sent abroad for treatment.

"The teacher is being send abroad with the support and the high-ranking state officials and in view of the seriousness of his injuries," the source said, adding Khosravi was dispatched to Tehran Saturday morning.

According to the district governor Aghajan Alijani, the teacher was serving his national service as a school teacher in the village.

The fire intensified after students rushing out of the room in the village school knocked over an oil drum.

Haddad Adel said the incident signified the need for observing security measures in the country's schools and other public places.

... Payvand News - 1/16/05 ... --

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