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Deadly blaze kills at least four children at Roma encampment

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Four children between the ages of three and five were killed after a fire broke out at a Roma encampment on the outskirts of Rome, Italian media said Sunday. The city has vowed to dismantle illegal sites and build new camps by the end of the year.


AFP - Four children aged between three and five years old died Sunday in a fire at a Roma camp on the outskirts of the Italian capital, emergency officials said.

"The bodies were half burned and it could be that there is a fifth victim," a fire service spokesman told AFP. "We are still carrying out checks, the fire has only just been put out."

Another four people have been reported missing, the ANSA news agency reported.

The fire broke out at around 8:30 pm (1930 GMT) in a building in a camp along the Via Appia Nuova, the New Appian Way, which runs out of the southeast of the city towards Ciampino airport, said ANSA.

Campaigners say thousands of Roma live in and around the capital, most of them in illegal constructions, which the city authorities last year said would be shut down.

They plan to build three new camps to house 6,000 Roma by the end of the year, to add to the seven such camps that already exist around Rome.

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