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  Monday, November 11, 2019
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The death toll from a massive rock fall in a densely
The death toll from a massive rock fall in a densely populated Cairo shanty town has risen to 51, local media said on Tuesday.

On Saturday morning, massive rocks weighing hundreds of tons tumbled down the Muqattam hill onto one of Cairo's poorest and most densely populated areas, leaving over 500 people trapped underneath the rubble.

Rescuers cleared a route on Monday through narrow streets to bring bulldozers and other heavy equipment to the area.

According to preliminary information, the rocks could have been dislodged by leaks from an improvised sewage system that gradually eroded parts of the limestone mountain. Another theory is that the disaster was caused by construction work on top of Muqattam.

Opposition parties and other organizations have criticized the government over the handling of the rescue operation.

Locals have also staged protests against a government decision to demolish all undamaged dwellings in the area amid fears that other rock falls might follow.

President Hosni Mubarak has issued instructions for the government to provide alternative housing for the former shanty town residents. So far, however, only 400 people out of an estimated 100,000 have been offered homes.


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