Dozens injured in Prague explosion | Europe| News and current affairs from around the continent | DW | 29.04.2013
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Dozens injured in Prague explosion

A powerful explosion in Prague's historic city center has injured dozens of people and may have left others trapped in a damaged building. Police say a gas leak is the likely cause of the blast.

An explosion on Divadelni Street rocked the Czech capital Monday, leaving police to cordon off the rubble-covered area.

Police spokesman Tomas Hulan said that a gas blast in a building near the historic National Theater seemed to be the cause of the explosion.

"We estimate up to 40 people were injured," Zdenek Schwarz, chief of Prague paramedics, told Czech Television.

"These are mostly light injuries, cuts, bruises, injuries from the glass. We estimate no more than four seriously injured, but this is preliminary information," he said.

Police said that there had been about 15 people in the building, which included an office of the International Air Transport Association and an art gallery.

The blast blew out the windows of neighboring buildings, including those of the famous Cafe Slavia.

There have not yet been any reports of death, a fire department spokeswoman told Reuters, and the neighboring buildings were being evacuated.

dr/msh (Reuters, AP, dpa, AFP)