Mogadishu – A massive fire destroyed large parts of Mogadishu’s main market on Monday, leaving three people dead, including two children, and several others wounded, police said.

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The blaze began early in the morning, sending thick plumes of smoke billowing over the Somali capital as flames devoured market stalls whose hodge-podge placement made it difficult for firefighters to contain the inferno.

“The fire was the worst that I have ever seen. It devastated a large part of the market. Three civilians died, two of them children and several others were also wounded but thanks to God the fire is now under control,” said police official Adam Mohamed.

Some said the blaze was caused by a fire stove, while other sources indicated there had been an electrical fault.

“We don’t know exactly what started this fire today. It continued for more than three hours and devastated a large swath of territory in the market. We have been informed about civilian deaths including children,” said trader Hassan Hussein.

Another trader Mohamed Ali sifted through the burnt debris of his stall which had sold household goods.

“My shop was destroyed completely to ashes … but thanks to God, we will survive,” he said.

The above story was originally published here