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article imageTeen's death pushes Romania nightclub fire toll to 60

By AFP     Nov 22, 2015 in World

The death toll in the nightclub blaze that toppled Romania's government late last month rose to 60 on Sunday, following the death of a teenaged student in an Austrian hospital, medical sources said.

The 19-year-old had been transferred to a Vienna hospital on November 7, after a week of treatment in Bucharest.

Another 40 people remain in hospital in Romania with injuries suffered in the fire that raged through a basement club in the capital on October 30. Twenty-eight others have been flown abroad for treatment.

The ill-fated nightclub was packed with some 400 revellers attending a rock concert when fireworks were let off, triggering a blaze and stampede. Twenty-six people died on the spot and nearly 200 were injured.

Initial investigations pointed to numerous breaches of safety regulations at the club, which critics saw as emblematic of the corruption and lax standards holding back one of the European Union's poorest nations.

The venue's three owners are have been charged with manslaughter.

The tragedy sparked mass anti-government protests, which led to the resignation of prime minister Victor Ponta, who had already been under pressure to quit over allegations of tax evasion and money-laundering.

He has been replaced by former EU agriculture commissioner Dacian Ciolos.

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