Huge fire hits UAE residential tower

Media captionThe fire engulfed a high-rise tower in the city of Ajman, in the United Arab Emirates

A large fire has hit a residential tower in the United Arab Emirates, police say, in the third such incident in a little more than a year.

The fire struck the tower in the emirate of Ajman, north of Dubai, the region’s police said on Twitter.

Reports in the UAE say there were no casualties, and that everyone was evacuated from the tower in al-Sawan.

On New Year’s Eve, a large fire engulfed the luxury 63-storey Address Hotel in central Dubai.

The latest fire struck late on Monday in the Ajman One complex, a development of 12 towers with some 3,000 apartments.

Videos posted by Ajman Police on Twitter show flames engulfing most of one side of the tower, reaching several storeys high.

An earlier video shows a large amount of burning debris falling to the ground. The UAE Minister of Interior, Sheikh Saif bin Zayed, visited the scene.

The 2.7bn dirham (£515m; $735m) project had been due to open in 2009, but was completed years later.

Media captionFootage showed flames engulfing the Address Hotel in January

In the New Year’s Eve hotel blaze, which burned for more than 20 hours, police say 16 people were injured. Planned fireworks at the nearby Burj Khalifa went ahead despite the fire breaking out shortly before.

Police said cladding used on the outside of the building did not meet safety standards.

The blaze was caused by a short circuit in a spotlight, investigators said.

In February 2015, a large fire badly damaged the Torch skyscraper in Dubai, one of the tallest residential towers in the world.

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