China building collapse

Chinese police say they have arrested nine people over the collapse of a building in the south-east city of Changsha, where several people remain trapped or missing.

Police said the building’s owner was detained, along with three others responsible for its construction.

Another five were charged with writing a false safety report for the building, which collapsed on Friday.

The cause of the disaster has not been confirmed by authorities.

On Saturday President Xi Jinping called for a search “at all cost” and ordered an investigation into the collapse in the city’s Wangcheng District.

Six people have been rescued, but dozens are still trapped inside or unaccounted for, according to Changsha Mayor Zheng Jianxin.

The six-storey building was mostly residential, but also featured a cinema and hotel.

A local fire official told state broadcaster CGTN that rescue efforts are being hampered by limited space for heavy machinery to lift away debris.

They said there was also a risk that adjacent buildings damaged by the incident could eventually collapse.

Weak safety and construction standards, along with corruption among local officials, have led to a number of building collapses in China.

Earlier this year, at least 16 people died after an explosion, triggered by a suspected gas leak, brought down a building in Chongquing.


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