Death toll in Guatemala children's shelter fire rises to 40

GUATEMALA CITY (AP) - The death toll in a fire at a Guatemalan children's shelter has risen to 40 with the death of another girl due to burns.

The death was announced Sunday by the Roosevelt Hospital in Guatemala's capital.

The fire began when mattresses were set ablaze during a protest by residents at the overcrowded youth shelter.

Authorities are still searching for answers in the disaster that has put a spotlight on failings in Guatemala's child protective services.

Prosecutors spokeswoman Julia Barrera says the head of the country's protective services agency has been ordered not to leave Guatemala.

Nineteen of the adolescents perished at the scene of Wednesday's inferno and another 21 have died in local hospitals.

Staff members at the government-run shelter have been accused of sexual abuse and other mistreatment of the children living at the shelter.

All the victims were aged between 14 and 17.

© 2017 Associated Press


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