A total of four children and two women have been killed in a fire that gutted an abandoned warehouse occupied by hundreds of informal settlers in the Philippines.

The Bureau of Fire Protection said this on Thursday.

It stated that “fire broke out on the second floor of the warehouse in the Manila suburban city of Paranaque on Wednesday evening and raged for more than three hours.”

It noted that two mothers and their four sons, aged between three years and 10 years, were killed in the fire.

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About 50 families or more than 250 people were squatting in the three-storey warehouse despite warnings from local officials that the building was not safe.

Investigators were still working to determine the cause of the fire but initial information indicated that it started in one of the rooms on the second floor where a boy was allegedly playing with matches.

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