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French teen sets himself on fire at Marseille school

Text by NEWS WIRES

Latest update : 2011-01-21

A 16-year-old French student was in a critical condition Tuesday after dousing himself with flammable liquid and setting himself alight at a school in the southern French city of Marseille. The cause of the attempted suicide was not known.

AFP - A 16-year-old French boy was rushed to hospital Tuesday in a critical condition after setting himself on fire at his school, officials in Marseille said.

The boy doused himself in a flammable liquid in the toilets of his private school in the southern city and then set himself alight, rescue service officials said.

He has second and third degrees burns over 70 percent of his body, they said. Hospital officials said the boy was in a critical condition.

A schoolmate told AFP that he had heard screams and ran out to see the boy on fire running down the stairs towards the school yard and that a school worker had extinguished the flames.

Marseille prosecutor Jacques Dallest, who went to the school, said it was too early to say why the boy had set himself alight but that he may have been influenced "by what he may have seen in the media about North Africa."

Several people have set themselves on fire in the Arab world to copy a Tunisian whose self-immolation sparked a popular revolt in the north African state.

The boy managed to make it from the second floor to the school yard where he had managed to say "I'm sick of it all" before collapsing in front of schoolmates, the prosecutor said

An 18-year-old schoolboy from the southwestern town of Bordeaux has been in a coma since November 18 when he set himself on fire in his school.

Date created : 2011-01-18

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