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Building Collapse in Havana’s Old Town Kills Three

At least three people have been killed in the collapse of a residential building in the Cuban capital, Havana.

The collapse happened late on Tuesday night local time, but it was not until Wednesday afternoon that rescue workers found the body of a 79-year-old resident under the rubble.

The two other victims were rescue workers who were searching the building when a second collapse happened.

Havana is known for its historic houses but many are dangerously dilapidated.

Emergency services work on the site where a residential building collapsed

Cuba’s housing minister said last month that 850,000 homes across the Communist-run island needed repairs.

Old Havana is popular with tourists who photograph its once-grand but now decaying houses.

But for its residents, a lack of suitable housing means that many families are crammed into buildings which are on the verge of collapse.

The government blames the economic embargo imposed on the island by the United States for its inability to source building materials to carry out repairs.

It announced a national programme to build new structures in 2018, but critics say it has concentrated on building hotels in an effort to attract tourists and thereby raise revenue rather than on homing locals.

The building collapse in Havana is just the latest in a string of disasters to hit the capital’s housing.

In May 2022, dozens of people were killed in a gas explosion at the Saratoga hotel.

Source : BBC