AA / Istanbul
Fourteen people were suffocated on Wednesday after a fire declared the day before the opening of the El Gouna Film Festival, in the “Plaza Theater”, the main hall designated for the opening ceremony, due to a “short circuit,” according to the Egyptian Ministry of Health and local media.
The ministry said in a statement that “14 citizens were suffocated after a fire that broke out in one of the main halls designated to house the El Gouna Film Festival organized in the governorate of the Red Sea (east)” .
Local media, including the private newspaper Al-Youm7, reported that the government’s civil protection forces “controlled the fire that broke out during the final preparations for the festival’s launch on Thursday,” and that it was caused by a “short circuit.”
The fifth edition of the El Gouna Film Festival kicks off on Thursday evening and the winners will be announced and awarded on October 22, in the presence of numerous Egyptian and Arab celebrities.
Egyptian billionaire Naguib Sawiris, one of the festival’s founders, said on Wednesday via his “Twitter” account that “the celebration center of the El Gouna Film Festival is intact and the event will take place.”
The first session of the festival was held in September 2017, with the presence of several Arab and international film stars, including the Americans Forest Whitaker and Oliver Stone or the Egyptians, Adel Imam and Yousra, with the screening of more than 70 films from 42 countries.
* Translated from Arabic by Hend Abdessamad
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